The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC


January 17, 2014

Willingham ponders District 23 run

TARBORO — A member of the Edgecombe County Board of Election (BOE) announced Thursday he is "seriously" considering running for the District 23 House of Representative seat in the May Primary.

Shelly Willingham, 70, is currently serving a second term on the BOE. In accordance with General Statutes, if he files to run for the seat, he must step down from the BOE.

Willingham's announcement came just days after Taro Knight, a Tarboro town councilman, announced he was "98 percent sure" he would run for the same seat. District 23, which includes all of Edgecombe and Martin Counties, is currently being held by veteran Rep. Joe Tolson (D-Edgecombe). Tolson, who is currently serving his ninth term, said he will not seek re-election.

"When I found out that Rep. (Joe) Tolson was not going to file, I thought that there is a great possibility that I should seek the seat myself," Willinghgam said. "At this point, I've been talking to people and getting a feel to see if it is feasible to do that. At this point, I feel that it is a good chance, but I have not made a final decision. It will be coming in the next couple of week."

Filing period for the May Primary begins noon Feb.10 and ends Feb. 28.

For the complete story, see today's print edition of The Daily Telegraph.

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