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Looking ahead at the General Election in St. Mary's County

Hollywood, MD- As some candidates are still reeling from their Primary Night victories, others are hitting the ground running in hopes of drumming up enough support for the November General Election.

In St. Mary’s County, all but one of the county commissioners seats are being contested. Incumbent County Commissioner President Randy Guy [R] is being challenged by Howard Thompson [D]. Recently, Thompson sat down with TheBayNet.com to talk about his campaign. A life-long resident of the county, Thompson said it’s about giving back to his community. “I think the county needs a different type of leadership at this time.”

Thompson has worked with Christmas in April since it started in 1990 and has served as the president of the board for the past several years. Thompson said this position provided him with the opportunity to meet people throughout the county. “It gives me a good perspective on what needs to be done and how we can help people.”

Thompson believes his leadership positions on both the county’s Zoning Board of Appeals and the Planning Commission make him the best choice as county commissioner president.

The St. Mary’s County Commissioner District One seat is being vacated by Tom Jarboe [R]. On Tuesday, June 26, Eric Colvin [R] beat out Mike Daras [R] for the Republican nomination. In the fall, Colvin will run against Tim Ridgell [D], both lifelong residents of St. Mary’s County. Ridgell, from St. Inigoes, has been a member of the Ridge Volunteer Fire Department since 1973.

In St. Mary’s County District Two, Rose V. Frederick [D] claimed victory over AnnMarie Abell [D]. Frederick will challenge incumbent Mike Hewitt [R] this fall. A retired federal government employee, Frederick spent years working as a financial manager and believes her experience will help her balance the county’s budget and provide funding where it’s needed. Frederick has also volunteered on county boards and commissions and believes that involvement has prepared her for the role of County Commissioner.

In St. Mary’s County District Three, unaffiliated candidate Clarke Guy is challenging incumbent John O’Connor [R]. When TheBayNet.com spoke with Guy about his decision to run unaffiliated he said, “I don’t think politics belong in local government.” Guy also admitted he doesn’t like politics, “I don’t like the bickering—I just want to help people.” A retired Air Force chief master sergeant, Guy serves with several veteran groups in the county and is the president of the Mechanicsville Lions Club. “I felt it was time to come out and help my neighbors, my family and my community.”

Current District Four County Commissioner Todd Morgan [R] is running unopposed in November.

In other races, Sheriff Tim Cameron [R] easily won the Republican nomination for Sheriff and is seeking his fourth term. Cameron will now face Ted Belleavoine [D] in the General Election in the fall. Belleavoine is a retired lieutenant in St. Mary’s County after serving 26 years. He’s currently working as a deputy sheriff with the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office. Belleavoine is also the chairman of St. Mary’s County’s Liquor Board. According to his web site, Belleavoine said, “I would like to take my unique training and experience with the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office and provide new direction and leadership.  One that supports our department and the safety and concerns of the community we protect and serve.”

In a narrow victory in the Republican race for Clerk of the Court, Debbie Mills Burch [R] will face her colleague, Faye Wheeler [D], in November. Wheeler has worked with the Clerk’s office for 25 years. In 2013, she became the supervisor for criminal, juvenile and jury cases. According to her campaign Facebook page, Wheeler wants to “bring professionalism and integrity to the citizens of St. Mary's County.”

All three Republican Delegates for St. Mary’s County also have opponents this fall. Delegate for 29A, Matt Morgan [R], is seeking re-election. His Democratic challenger is Chaptico resident Roberta “Robbie” Miles Loker. She worked for more than 25 years in the Department of Social Services and retired as assistant director here in St. Mary’s County. After retiring she became a reverse mortgage lender. Loker told TheBayNet.com she feels her time working for the state has given her an advantage to understanding how the state government operates.

In the race for House of Delegate 29B, incumbent Deb Rey [R] is being challenged by Brian Crosby [D]. A native of Philadelphia, Crosby earned a business degree from Drexel and then headed to law school at Western Michigan. Upon graduation, he accepted a job as a medical malpractice attorney. After just two days on the job, Crosby decided he wanted to pursue his dream of becoming a U.S. Army Ranger and serve his country. He served three tours in Afghanistan during his time in the Army. Once he was discharged, Crosby accepted a job with a contractor at NAS Patuxent River. He said there are two reasons he’s running for office, “One, I’m committed to service and two I want to make my community better.”

In the race for House of Delegates 29C, incumbent Jerry Clark [R] will take on Democrat Julia Nichols. She has lived in Southern Maryland for two decades after spending much of her younger life moving around the country due to her father’s job. Nichols has worked at Historic St. Mary’s City and St. Mary’s College of Maryland. She was an integral part of opening the only charter school in the area, Chesapeake Public Charter School. Nichols serves as the Chair of the Strategic Planning Committee for the school. Nichols has been endorsed by the Maryland State Education Association and Calvert Education Association.

In the race for Senate District 29, Jack Bailey [R] was victorious over incumbent Senator Steve Waugh [R]. In November, Bailey will be up against Democrat Thomas Brewer. A native of St. Mary’s County, Brewer decided to leave his career as a pharmacist in 2011 when the opioid epidemic started taking over. Brewer also serves as the President of St. Mary’s County Commission. In a recent interview with TheBayNet.com, Brewer said, “I realized the issues I wanted to address were better addressed at the state level than the county level.” Brewer went on to say some of his top priorities include the opioid crisis, healthcare and environmental issues.

The General Election is Nov. 6, 2018.

Contact Joy Shrum at j.shrum@thebaynet.com

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