Like many of you I take pride in reading the weekly articles in the Bryan County News. Last week’s 21 May edition featured profiles of candidates for Bryan County Sheriff. However, there was no profile of Al Hagan, the Democratic Candidate. On 18 May the Bryan County Now newspaper featured all six candidates and on 20 May all six candidates participated in the Richmond Hill Bryan County Chamber of Commerce virtual forum for sheriff.
Al Hagan is a lifelong resident of Bryan County, a law enforcement professional, a businessman and a man of integrity who will graciously accept your newspaper’s apology.
I hope this is not a reflection of partisan politics on behalf of the Editors of Bryan County News. You truly owe Al Hagan and his supporters an apology. And you should print Al Hagan’s profile on your front page with that apology.
Better late than never.
Paul M. Thurston, Richmond Hill
Editor’s note: Thanks for the letter and apologies in advance for this lengthy explanation, but we feel it’s necessary. There’s no partisan politics here. Al Hagan was emailed the same questionnaire we sent to all six candidates for sheriff on May 15 and he did not respond. Therefore his profile did not appear May 21.
In a May 21 phone conversation, Hagan said he did not receive the questionnaire, so it was emailed again May 21.
The May 15 and May 21 emails were sent to his campaign email. By text on May 21 he was given a Tuesday, May 26 deadline for this week’s paper. He confirmed receipt of that text.
The Bryan County News has covered Hagan’s bid for sheriff in the past and will continue to do so in future, and we thank him for stepping up to the plate to serve his community. It is worth noting, however, that he is unopposed in the Democratic primary and therefore faces no opposition until November. In short, for Hagan this primary is a formality, since he has already advanced to the general election - as have a number of other candidates for countywide office unopposed in their primary. None have been profiled.
By contrast, the five candidates for sheriff in the Republican primary are in a contested race with the winner to be decided in June or by runoff election. Rightly or wrongly, that was our focus last week. In the meantime, we’ll be happy to run Mr. Hagan’s profile if he provides one.