WRGA Voter Resource Page for the Bartow County 2023 Municipal Election

October 30th, 2023 – 11:13 AM

WRGA Special Report –

Welcome to the Bartow County voter resource page created by WRGA News:

WRGA News reached out to all Candidates running in Bartow County for the upcoming 2023 municipal election so that voters can get to know them better.

We heard back from a few of the candidates running and have provided their written or audio messages to the voters in Bartow County down below separated by City and position:

Alan Towe, Adairsville City Council, post 1:

“My name is Alan Towe, and I am seeking re-election to Adairsville City Council Post 1. I am married to the former LaCreshia Hibberts, and we have 3 daughters and sons-in-law, and 6 grandchildren. I am a long-time resident of the City of Adairsville, having graduated from Adairsville High School and the Federal DOT PHMSA qualification program in Oklahoma City OK, as a pipeline Safety Inspector. I have completed over400 credited hours of continuing education through the Georgia Municipal Association receiving a certificate of Recognition, certificate of Achievement, certificate of Excellence, and a certificate of Distinction. My work history includes experience as a utility technician and natural gas superintendent for the City of Adairsville. I am currently employed with the State of Georgia Public Service Commission as a Principal Inspector. I have served on the Adairsville Development Authority and am a member of Adairsville Baptist Church.

I believe my 16 years serving on the City Council, and work experience in the utility industry will help in preparing Adairsville for the next four years with the anticipated growth while preserving our small-town atmosphere and protecting the quality of life. I pledge to continue working for all the Citizens of Adairsville and business owners by continuing to improve streets and sidewalks, utility infrastructure, parks, community center, walking trails, and playgrounds, provide entertainment events, attract restaurants, and new businesses for our historic downtown, and a police department fully equipped to protect and serve.

I urge all citizens who want Adairsville to continue to prosper please come out and vote for Alan Towe Councilman Post One. Early voting will begin at Manning Mill Park on October 30 to November 3. Election day will be held on Tuesday, November 7 at Manning Mill Park. Together we can keep Adairsville moving forward to be the best place to work, live, and play. A place we are proud to call home. Your vote and support will be greatly appreciated.”

Adairsville Mayor Candidate, Larry D. Gardner:

Adairsville Mayor Candidate, Kenneth Jerome Carson :

“Kenneth J. Carson knew from childhood that he was destined for civil service. Born and raised in the Mechanicsville Heights Area of Cartersville, he graduated from Cartersville High School in 1983. Carson’s first job was in Adairsville at age 13 where he now serves as Mayor. First elected in 2014, Carson has served as Mayor for almost 10 years and has been in law enforcement for over 36 years, he is currently employed at the City of Calhoun Police Department as a Major over the patrol division.

With an entrepreneurial spirit and humble beginnings, Mayor Kenneth Carson has also
served the community by formerly owning and operating several small businesses starting in
1985: Adairsville Texaco, Carson’s Professional Auto Detail, Top Notch Professional Auto Detail,
Kenneth Carson’s Towing and Recovery, K.C.’s Reconditioned Appliance and Repair, and The
Professional Private Security Officer Group – all were in Bartow County where he has resided his
entire life. This provided him an opportunity to mentor youth in the community and serve as a
role model.

Carson attended Floyd College, which is now known as Georgia Highlands College, The
University of West Georgia, and has completed multiple training programs through the
University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Local Government through the Georgia
Municipal Association (GMA), achieving a Certificate of Excellence. Carson also holds a
Completion Certificate from the Military Ministry and the Association of Christian Counselors
for Care and Counsel for Combat Trauma. He currently serves as the District 1 Representative
on GMA’s Municipal Training Board through 2027.

As Mayor of Adairsville, Carson has served on the Board of Advisors for the Georgia Peace Officers Standards and Training Council for Pickens and Rome Regional Police Academies. Mayor Carson also currently serves on the Georgia Municipal Association Legislative Policy Council (LPC). Mayor Carson is very involved with the Georgia Municipal Association and in addition to the Certificate of Excellence has
participated in over 200 hours of additional training. Mayor Carson also serves his community
as a member of the Kiwanis Club International, Adairsville Lions Club, and Lions Club International.

Kenneth currently resides in Adairsville with his family and enjoys riding motorcycles,
spending time with his children and grandchildren, and being involved in the community.”

Emerson Mayor Candidate, Bo Jordon:

“I am Bo Jordan, candidate for Mayor in the City of Emerson’s upcoming municipal election. I am a third-generation Emerson native, with my family roots dating back to the 1930s here. I was elected to Emerson City Council in 2021, where I served as Councilman from January 2022 until August of 2023, where I resigned in order to qualify and seek the Mayor’s seat.

I feel that I possess strong leadership values that are important to be the face of Emerson. I hold myself to the highest standards, knowing that honesty and transparency are imperative to the success of small cities. I value our City staff and always take into consideration options to make a great working environment for them, which in turn makes our City services responsive and of top quality. I try to focus on cost savings and measures we can take as a City to alleviate potential financial hardships and also try to come up with ideas to make our organization flow more efficiently. I also work closely with our City Management team to ensure the City stays on track and we can meet the goals that we forecast. I am always accessible to citizens and field many complaints, which are passed through the proper channels to get fixed as soon as possible. 

Following in my grandfather’s footsteps, he served the City of Emerson as Councilman and Mayor for over 30 years of total service. I am a Sergeant with the Acworth Police Department, where I have served since 2008.  I am married to my wife Katie and we have two children, Cash and Caroline Grace. We attend Emerson Church and spend our free time with family and friends, often cooking out or attending local dirt track races.”

Emerson City Council Candidate, Vincent Wiley (no photo submitted):

“My name is Vincent Wiley and I am running to retain my seat as a City councilman with the great city of Emerson!  As a City councilman for the last 8 years. I have seen tremendous growth from the addition of new hotels to new housing developments to name a few. Emerson being on the edge of Metro Atlanta and at the foothills of the North Georgia mountains lends itself to so many beautiful natural amenities and a backdrop like none other. Historically, this great city was always destined to grow because of the amount of minerals that were mined here. So, I urge you to go with me as we grow this city into the city it was meant to be! Please Re-Elect Vincent Wiley City Councilman for the City of Emerson!”

Euharlee City Council Candidate, Peter Piliero:

“My name is Peter James Piliero. I moved to Euharlee 15 years ago from Vermont. I chose Euharlee for the peaceful rural community it was. I am a Marine Corps and Vietnam combat veteran, and a 45-year carpenter whose contract was a handshake. No pens are required, my word is my bond. I am not a politician and never wanted to be involved in politics, however, I and many other Euharlee residents are fed up with the current City Council ignoring the citizens of Euharlee stating that they are against the proposed expansion that is happening. I have attended numerous growth meetings where the citizens have expressed their concerns but have been ignored. The majority of residents have moved here to escape from crowded places like Woodstock and Marietta and the current council is putting us right back to what we were trying to escape from. I have decided to run for a City Council seat to stand up for the people. If I do get elected and find that the people are not satisfied with me, I will resign.”

Euharlee City Council Candidate, Ron Hartman:

“My objective in running for this position is to develop and implement a better vision for the future of our city. Euharlee is just a small north Georgia town of only 5,000 folks, more of a historic small village than a bustling commercial center. My desire is to allow it to grow, yet maintain its existing historical and cultural roots by properly managing and controlling the fast-paced growth that is going on all around the city. This includes providing increased opportunities for citizens to have a voice in the decisions that affect their lifestyle and quality of life while living in Euharlee.

My objectives include the following: Protect Our History and Culture, Control Growth through Planning, Broaden the Citizen’s Voice and Transparency in Government, Increase Our Economic Stability, Apply Conservative Fiscal Management, and Promote Increased Tourism. I’m a 27-year resident of Euharlee and a transplant from northern Virginia. I arrived here via a job transfer with Lockheed Martin Corporation, to their Aeronautical Systems Company in Marietta back in 1996. I’m a retired Engineer, with a BS in Civil Engineering from Virginia Tech, but my primary lifetime profession has been in the Software Engineering field. I retired from Lockheed Martin in 2002.

My career has involved working on highly technical projects for both NASA and DOD military programs. My work experience has included both technical and management roles, for developing, managing, and reporting on the budgeting, planning, and execution of multi-million dollar NASA and DOD contracts.

I am a divorced parent of two children, living in Virginia and Texas, and have a single grandson. My political views tend to be Conservative, but I consider myself to be an Independent and not a straight-line Republican voter. I vote on the issues and do not follow either party line. I’m a military veteran and served 8 years in the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam era, as a Naval Aviator flying anti-submarine warfare aircraft. I perform volunteer services with the Sleep in Heavenly Peace charitable non-profit organization that builds beds for families in the Coosa Valley area that have children who have no bed to sleep in. My personal interests include gold prospecting around Lake Allatoona, kayaking, hiking, traveling, Civil War history, politics, glassware collectibles, and antique junking.

If you live within the City of Euharlee, I’d appreciate your vote on November 7th to help ensure we continue to enjoy the many wonderful opportunities the City provides for us all.”

Taylorsville City Council Candidate, Jessica Harris:

“My name is Jessica Harris. I am running for a seat on the Taylorsville City Council. I have lived in downtown Taylorsville for the past 4 years and have lived in Taylorsville my entire life with all of mine and my husband’s family all living here too. I am married to Cole Harris and we have a one-year-old little girl named Auggie Ro. We also have two golden doodles and a red heeler who we consider a part of our little family. I work for my dad’s concrete company alongside my dad and husband. We love spending our free time at the beach, or the lake, or playing outside with our kids and dogs. The city of Taylorsville holds a special place in my heart. There is nowhere like it. The small-town feel, the closeness, and the kindness the members of this community share with one another are hard to come by. There comes a time when the younger generation needs to learn the ways and help make a difference in our communities and that is why I want to become more involved. In high school, I was always a part of the student council and a member of various clubs, so this role is one that I probably always saw coming for myself, eventually. It’s just now is the time to take action. I want to serve the community that I love and call home.”

Mayor of White Candidate, Jane Richards:

“Jane L. Richards was born in Cartersville, Georgia, and grew up with her three brothers on the family dairy farm in White. She attended White Elementary and graduated from Cass High in 1976. She is married to David King and between them they have 5 children and 10 grandchildren. She owns an eight-house poultry farm on the outskirts of White, is a member of the Bartow County Farm Bureau Board of Directors, a member of the Bartow Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and a seven-year cancer survivor. Jane has a background of working as a city clerk and city manager in White for 31 years, where she was a certified municipal clerk and finance officer through the Georgia Municipal Association in conjunction with the University of Georgia continuing education program. She is familiar with the inner workings of a small city government and believes that her experience will greatly benefit the citizens of White.

The city faces growth challenges due partly to surrounding growth in the unincorporated Bartow County and the recent interest in developing multi-housing projects inside the city. One issue is how to handle the addition of more traffic on Highway 411 and on the city streets. The streets are already in need of repairs or resurfacing and our citizens have to sit in traffic for extended periods of time to turn onto side streets or to enter 411. Unfortunately, the last few administrations have had a low level of transparency when it comes to its financial status so the question is ‘Do they have the resources to fund these much-needed road projects’.

Another issue connected with growth is the water supply. The city now has three wells of which two are being used and for emergencies, there is an interconnection with Bartow County Water. The state limits the amount of groundwater withdrawn so what is the limit and where will the extra water come from for any new developments within the city’s service area? Will it come from Bartow County? Probably not considering the county just placed a six-month emergency moratorium on multi-housing development applications due to the overwhelming number of potential applicants. Not only is water a problem but sewer is as well because the city was promised a certain amount of capacity by the City of Cartersville and it’s unknown whether that capacity limit has been met. This is something that needs to be addressed prior to any large projects being permitted within the city’s sewer service area which extends to outside areas around the city. If elected Jane will work diligently to help guide the city through these issues and any others that may arise in the future.”

City Council Candidate for White, Jean Swank:

“I’m Jean Swank and I am running for City Council in the City of White, Georgia. We purchased a home in the White about 7 years ago and began restoring it, moving into it about 3 years ago. During that time, we got to know the friendly, kind people and the slower-paced atmosphere of the area. When I read that the City of White might be dissolved, I was concerned. So, my husband and I started attending City Council meetings and I volunteered to help in any way that I could. In July of 2022, Curtis Powell became Chair of the Planning and Zoning Commission for the City of White. I was one of the people that Curtis asked to be part of that Commission and I was elected to be Secretary of that Commission. I’ve worked at several jobs during my life but my most recent was at the Georgia Tech Research Institute the applied research arm of Georgia Tech. While working there, I earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Information and Computer Science and later earned an Executive Master of Science in Management of Technology both from Georgia Tech. I put both degrees to use in my various roles at Georgia Tech Research Institute. In the later portion of my career, I was heavily involved in the process improvement and quality management for our research activities, which were required to compete for business with the U.S. Department of Defense.

Why am I running for City Council? I made my final decision to run while supporting the newly elected mayor, Curtis Powell, and some dedicated City Council Members to keep the City Hall office running after the City Clerk quit on Mr. Powell’s first day in office. Working in the City Hall office, for the month of April 2023, allowed me the opportunity to meet with many citizens of the City of White and interact with them. It reinforced my belief that the City of White is a good place to live with people who care about each other during good times and bad.

I believe that first and foremost elected officials work for ALL the people that live in that city.
Additionally, those in office need to be professional with their duties and work together for the
betterment of the city. I do not quit when the going gets tough. Without teamwork, it is very hard to
successfully run a thriving city. If elected, I will do my best to encourage teamwork, help define and
achieve measurable goals, and continue to work with the Mayor and City Council to develop community
events/activities that will help to forge bonds with our neighbors and community.”

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