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Election 2023

Incumbent Shakeyla Ingram faces 2 more challengers in District 2 City Council race

More candidates file Thursday as filing period closes at noon Friday


Candidates have until noon today to file for municipal offices in Cumberland County, according to the Board of Elections.

As the filing period neared its end Thursday, two more challengers emerged for the District 2 Fayetteville City Council seat; the Hope Mills commissioners race gained two hopefuls; and a challenger filed to become mayor of Spring Lake.

Gail Morfesis and Larry Marshall filed Thursday to challenge incumbent City Councilwoman Shakeyla Ingram in District 2. They join challengers Laura Rodrigues Mussler and Janene (Dublin) Ackles, who filed for the office previously.

In the Hope Mills Board of Commissioners race, Ronald Starling and Patrick Mitchell joined the field. Other contenders include challengers Ronnie Strong, Pat Edwards, Mark Hess, Deanna L. Rosario, H. Elyse Craver and Karen Smith Saracen, as well as incumbents Bryan A. Marley, Kenjuana McCray, Jerry Legge, Grilley Mitchell and Joanne Scarola.

Fredricka Sutherland filed Thursday to challenge Spring Lake Mayor Kia Anthony, according to the Board of Elections.

Wade Commissioner George E. Strater on Thursday joined Commissioner Johnny Lanthorn in a bid to succeed Mayor Joe Dixon.

Challenger Ralph A. Vogt filed for a seat on the Stedman Board of Commissioners.

Earlier filings

Three candidates have filed to be Fayetteville’s next mayor, with a fourth saying that he will file Friday. Incumbent Mitch Colvin is being challenged by Freddie de la Cruz and Quancidine Hinson-Gribble. Charles Evans, a former member of the City Council and Cumberland County Board of Commissioners, said in a news release Tuesday evening that he will file as a candidate for mayor on Friday.

In several City Council districts, the incumbents have filed to retain their seats while challengers have emerged in two districts. They are:

  • District 1: Incumbent Kathy Keefe Jensen.
  • District 2: Incumbent Shakeyla Ingram and challengers Laura Rodrigues Mussler, Janene (Dublin) Ackles, Gail Morfesis and Larry Marshall.
  • District 3: Incumbent Mario (Be) Benavente.
  • District 4: Incumbent D.J. Haire and challenger Stuart A. Collick.
  • District 5: Incumbent Johnny Dawkins and challengers Fred G. LaChance III, Justin Herbe and Lynne Bissette Greene.
  • District 6: Incumbent Derrick Thompson.
  • District 7: Incumbent Brenda McNair.
  • District 8: Incumbent Courtney Banks-McLaughlin.
  • District 9: Incumbent Deno Hondros.

Dani Osborne filed for a seat on the Cumberland-Eastover Sanitary District board on Tuesday.

In the Hope Mills Board of Commissioners race, candidates include challengers Ronnie Strong, Pat Edwards, Mark Hess, Deanna L. Rosario, H. Elyse Craver, Karen Smith Saracen, Ronald Starling and Patrick Mitchell, as well as incumbents Bryan A. Marley, Kenjuana McCray, Jerry Legge, Grilley Mitchell and Joanne Scarola.

Incumbent Mayor Jackie Warner faces challenger Jessie Bellflowers, who served on the Board of Commissioners from 2017 to 2021.

Other candidates

The filings in other Cumberland County municipalities include:

  • Spring Lake: Candidates include challengers Daniel B. Gerald, Jackie Lee Jackson, James P. O’Garra and Katrina (Bell) Bratcher and incumbents Robyn Chadwick, Sona L. Cooper, Adrian Jones Thompson, Marvin Lackman and Raul Palacios. Mayor Kia Anthony will face challenger Fredricka Sutherland for reelection.
  • Stedman: Incumbent Mark Lee is seeking reelection to the Board of Commissioners, joining challengers Joseph Manuel and Ralph A. Vogt on the ballot.
  • Godwin: Challenger Angela Burnette Lambert and incumbents George Cooper Jr., Ronald McNeill and Scarlet M. Hall have filed for the Board of Commissioners. Godwin Mayor Willie Burnette filed for reelection on Wednesday.
  • Falcon: Wayne G. Lucas filed for mayor; incumbents John C. Wheeler and Dwayne Dunning Sr. and challengers Chris Stone, Sue Brigman and James Danny Nelson filed for seats on the town board.
  • Eastover: Mayor Charles McLaurin is seeking reelection, and Frederick A. Williams and incumbent Stan Crumpler filed for a seat on the Town Council.
  • Linden: Frances B. Collier filed as a challenger for mayor, and Barbara C. Denning as a challenger for the Board of Commissioners. Incumbent board members Betsy Small filed for reelection on Monday, and Larry Overby filed Tuesday.
  • Wade: Commissioners Jennifer Dixon Weaver and Keven A. Herring are seeking reelection. Johnny Lanthorn and George E. Strater filed for mayor.

Filing deadlines

Candidates can file for all municipal elections through noon July 21, according to the Board of Elections. 

The city of Fayetteville primary is scheduled Oct. 10, and the general election for all municipalities is Nov. 7.

Municipal offices that will be on the ballot include:

  • Fayetteville: mayor, all nine City Council seats.
  • Eastover Sanitary District: one board member.
  • Eastover: mayor, three town council seats.
  • Falcon: mayor, all four council seats.
  • Godwin: mayor, all four council seats.
  • Hope Mills: mayor, all five council seats.
  • Linden: mayor, all five council seats.
  • Spring Lake: mayor, all five council seats.
  • Stedman: three council seats.
  • Wade: mayor, all five council seats.

Anyone who is registered to vote in the contest in which they would run can file a candidacy. Voters do not have to belong to a political party to run for municipal office.

The only other eligibility requirement is to be 21 or older on Election Day. Any candidate who has been convicted of a felony must also disclose that information when filing for office. 

To file a candidacy, candidates must complete a notice of candidacy form at the Cumberland County Board of Elections in the E. Newton Smith Center at 227 Fountainhead Lane. Alternatively, candidates can have the form notarized and delivered to the Board of Elections office.

Additional information about candidate petitions is available at https://www.ncsbe.gov/candidates/petitions.

Prospective candidates can find more information and forms by visiting the Board of Elections website at Board of Elections website.

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Contact editor Bobby Parker at bparker@cityviewnc.com.

Cumberland County, Fayetteville, Hope Mills, Spring Lake, elections, voting