The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
Candidates declare for Spotsy, Stafford posts
Three Democrats have put their names in the race for the four Stafford County Board of Supervisors seats on the ballot this fall.
A former supervisor, a past candidate and a political newcomer are hoping to change the dynamic on the seven-member board, which has been dominated by Republicans the past two years. (Six of the current members are Republicans; Jack Cavalier, who is a federal employee, is an independent.)
The Falmouth District is the most hotly contested seat, with three well-known current and former officeholders vying for the seat being vacated by current board Chairwoman Susan Stimpson.
Stafford’s seven supervisors and School Board members serve staggered terms. Other districts on the Nov. 5 ballot are Hartwood, Aquia and Garrisonville.
Democrats officially have until Monday to file with the registrar.
David Beiler, who served as supervisor for one term in 1998, decided just before the Democratic caucus on June 1 that the party needed to present a challenger for the Falmouth seat.
He will face Republican Meg Bohmke, who is finishing her first term on the School Board, and independent Robert Belman, who served two terms on the School Board.
Stimpson is not running for the local seat after losing her bid for the lieutenant governor nomination at the Republican state convention.
Aquia Supervisor Paul Milde, a Republican seeking a third term, is being challenged by 20-year-old Mara Sealock, who is running as a Democrat.
Milde has raised far more in campaign donations over the past four years than anyone else running in the local election. He reported raising $147,078 since January 2010, and currently has $73,395 on hand.
In the Garrisonville District, incumbent Republican Ty Schieber will face a Democratic opponent in Laura Sellers.
This will be Sellers’ second time seeking public office, after a failed 2009 bid for Garrisonville seat. She also applied to fill Schieber’s empty seat on the School Board earlier this year but was not chosen.
Sellers is a research analyst with the Defense Intelligence Agency and is also working toward a master’s degree in social work at The Catholic University of America.
In the Hartwood District, Republican Supervisor Gary Snellings is unopposed.
STAFFORD SCHOOL BOARD
Each of the four open seats on the School Board is also being contested.
Three people are running in the Falmouth District: current Planning Commissioner Scott Hirons, Mark Kitta and Nicolas Re. The current officeholder is Bohmke, who is running for the Board of Supervisors.
In the Aquia District, current board chairman Stephanie Johnson is not seeking re-election. The two candidates there are Vanessa Griffin and Irene Egan.
Garrisonville School Board member Nannette Kidby is being challenged by R. Pamela Yeung.
And Hartwood School Board member Holly Hazard faces a challenge from William “Eric” Herr.
The Battlefield District seat on the Board of Supervisors has three candidates.
Chris Yakabouski, who represented Battlefield from 2004 until 2008, received the local GOP endorsement for the seat. He faces two independent challengers—Willie Brown and Lora Pierce.
Brown, 73, who moved to Spotsylvania six years ago, retired in 1997 as assistant superintendent of the Erie County Sheriff’s Department in upstate New York.
He has served on the Virginia Board of Pharmacy and was a surveillance officer for the Fredericksburg-area drug court.
Pierce, 48, is the billing manager at Surgical Associates of Fredericksburg. She is the co-founder of a neighborhood-watch program in Spotswood Estates and a member of the Nature Conservancy.
Current Battlefield District Supervisor Benjamin Pitts is not seeking reelection.
The Berkeley District seat being vacated by longtime Supervisor Emmitt Marshall also features three candidates.
Dennis Buchanan and Mark Kuechler are running as independents. Greg Cebula received the Republican nomination for the seat.
Lee Hill District Supervisor Gary Skinner, an independent, is seeking re-election. He is being challenged by Mark Shigley, who is also running as an independent. Both candidates are retired Marines.
SPOTSY SCHOOL BOARD
Incumbent Gil Seaux has two opponents for the Berkeley District School Board seat. Mark Marshall, a lifelong county resident and employee of the Spotsylvania school system, and Erin Grampp, a local horseback riding instructor who is backed by the Republican Party, both announced their candidacies for the seat.
School Board Chairwoman Amanda Blalock is running unopposed in her bid for re-election in Lee Hill while Baron Braswell, who lost to Linda Wieland by 29 votes in the last election, is running unopposed in the Battlefield District. Wieland is not seeking re-election.
OTHER AREA OFFICES UP FOR GRABS
Here is a look at some other local races on the November ballot in the Fredericksburg area.
In Fredericksburg, the field is open for the treasurer’s race with G.M. “Jim” Haney’s announcement that he will retire at the end of this term after four decades in office.
His chief deputy, Brenda Wood, is seeking to succeed him, as is Rita E. Girard, who has a management background.
Sheriff Paul W. Higgs is being challenged by Master Police Officer Ronald A. Swaney, a member of the city’s police department who is in community policing.
Commissioner of Revenue Lois B. Jacob and Commonwealth’s Attorney LaBravia J. Jenkins have no challengers.
Republican Charles V. “Chuck” Duncan is challenging seven-term incumbent Bradley Rosenberger for the Jefferson District seat on the Board of Supervisors. Rosenberger has traditionally run as a Republican, but chose to seek re-election as an independent following a conservative takeover of the local party.
Incumbent Larry Aylor, who was elected to the Cedar Mountain District seat as a Republican in 2009, will run for a third term as an independent. He is being challenged by Planning Commissioner Jack Frazier.
Bill Chase, seeking an unprecedented ninth term, will run unopposed in the Stevensburg District.
In School Board races, Vice Chairman Elizabeth Hutchins, who was redistricted out of the Cedar Mountain District, is running for the Stevensburg seat being vacated by George Dasher.
Betsy Howard Smith and Richard Goff will oppose each other for Hutchins’ old seat.
There will be no School Board candidate on the ballot from Jefferson District in November.
KING GEORGE COUNTY
Seven people are vying for two seats on the King George Board of Supervisors.
In the Shiloh District, Cedell Brooks Jr. faces two challengers for the first time since he was elected to the board in 1991. They are: Shawn Lawrence, a community action specialist at the disAbility Resource Center in Fredericksburg, and Cathy Binder, a track coach who owns a video and photography production company.
Three people are trying to keep incumbent John LoBuglio from a second term as James Monroe District supervisor. One is James Howard, a contractor at the Navy base in Dahlgren whom LoBuglio unseated four years ago. The others are Richard Lorey, who retired after 35 years at the Navy base, and Jeff Bueche, a petty officer with the Coast Guard.
Mike Rose is unopposed in his second term for Shiloh District School Board member. No one filed paperwork for the James Monroe District School Board seat.
Keri Gusmann is running unopposed as commonwealth’s attorney.
Two incumbents and five others will be contesting this fall’s elections for positions in two Orange County Board of Supervisor and School Board districts.
The election for District Four supervisor will be a three-way race. Jonathan N. Chasen, Jim P. Crozier and Matthew A. Sutton will vie for that seat. Incumbent Supervisor Grover Wilson is not running for reelection.
In District One, incumbent Supervisor Shannon Clore Abbs is being challenged by Diane D. Strong.
District One incumbent School Board member Lou M. Thompson is running unopposed.
District Four School Board incumbent Jerry Bledsoe is not seeking re-election. Bette H. Winter is running unopposed for that seat.
Staff writers Pam Gould, Donnie Johnston, Cathy Dyson and Dan McFarland contributed to this report.
Katie Thisdell: 540/735-1975