- By Molly Bloom For the AJC
We asked candidates running in next month’s city, school and municipal elections to explain why you should vote for them. In addition to asking them questions about their experience and their stand on prominent issues, we asked some candidates to tell us which television character with whom they most identify. See where candidates stand on important issues, and who has a lot in common with Batman.
(See Fulton County Voter Guide)
Name: Angelyne Butler
Residence: Forest Park - Ward 4
What experience will help you in office? 20-plus years of Leadership,15-plus years of management, over 10 years in local government, political science degree, master’s in public administration, PhD, ABD In public policy and administration
What issue got you into this race? Lack of leadership, 7.5 percent unemployment rate, low median household income compared to surrounding metro cities, limited housing options and lack of transparency and accountability manifested in the P.E.E.R.S platform. (Political inclusion, , Economic growth, Educational awareness, Residential opportunities, Social empowerment).
Which current television character do you identify most with? Jennifer Hudson - “The Voice” ... She was unknown until “American Idol.” Even though she wasn't victorious it was the beginning of the catapult of an amazing career; including “Dreamgirls” and success in a music career. Despite her challenges she continued her pursuits, while remaining her authentic self and continues to yield significant success.
Phone number: 1-833-5Butler or 1-833-528-8537
Name: David Lockhart (i)
Residence: Ash Street
Profession: Attorney / mayor
What experience will help you in office? Having served as the mayor of Forest Park for the past four years, I have a unique perspective of projects already underway and those slated to begin. I understand the challenges that we have overcome and those that lie ahead. With my professional background, I have been able to identify tax savings for our residents and businesses that would have otherwise been overlooked.
What issue got you into this race? A true Forest Park native, I was born and raised here. Forest Park is where my wife and I chose to raise our four children and where I chose to open my law practice. Making my hometown the best it can be only makes sense. As an attorney, I represent families and small businesses, and it was a natural transition to add another way to serve my neighbors and my community as the mayor.
Which current television character do you identify most with? Don Draper (”Mad Men.”) Like Don, I was raised near poverty, but through hard work and God's blessings, I was able to succeed. I will find creative solutions when obvious paths are blocked. Most find me quite likeable, but I am willing to make enemies doing right thing.
Phone number: 678-986-8017
Councilperson Ward 1
Name: Kimberly James
Residence: Forest Park
What experience will help you in office? I have lived in Forest Park for over 25 years and proudly serve my community. I serve and have served as chair of local school council, member of Starr Park Advisory Board, member of Forest Park Minister Association, leader of FP High School PTSA which is now a National PTA School of Excellence, volunteer with Mission Forest Park, volunteer volleyball coach and so on. I have a heart to serve all God's people in my community.
What issue got you into this race? I would like the community to have a voice. I would like for all residents to be included in the conversation I would like to have initiatives to drive business and employment opportunity to our community. We need initiatives for teens, young adults and seniors.
Which current television character do you identify most with? I am too busy to get into television and identify with a character. I have a son who recently graduated from Lincoln College of Technology, a freshman daughter at UGA, a senior daughter at Forest Park High and a sophomore son at Forest Park High, I would call myself, SUPERWOMAN!
Phone number: 404-797-8382
Name: Thomas (Tommy) Smith (i)
Residence: 4778 Hendrix Drive Forest Park
What experience will help you in office? The 60 years living in Forest Park coupled with the five years serving the citizens gives will help me do what is necessary to serve the citizens of Forest Park going forward.
What issue got you into this race? Five years ago I saw the need for a representative that had no hidden or personal agendas to have the best interest of ALL of the residents of Forest Park at heart. That still remains true today. I have and will always be a humble servant whenever there is a need. I have never left a call unanswered.
Which current television character do you identify most with? If I had to pick one I guess it would be Frank Reagan-”Blue Bloods” because everything is about God, family, and community. Serving is something you must have a passion for or you should never enter public life.
Phone number: 404-366-0776
Councilperson Ward 2
Name: Dabouze Antoine (i)
Residence: 4723 Chesler St., Forest Park
What experience will help you in office? My track record for relating to the citizens in Ward 2 makes me the perfect candidate for the job. Since being elected to office I have kept an open-door policy for the citizens in Ward 2. I am sensitive to our needs and have proven to go the extra mile to work on solutions where we have problems or fall short. The people trust my heart and know that I have their back.
What issue got you into this race? I am running for re-election because my work is not finished. Originally I got involved because I saw a big problem with government customer service. The people in Forest Park Ward 2 were not being informed, law enforcement relations were poor and our community was being overlooked because the seat was empty. I wanted to help ... I believe in focusing on the solution instead of focusing on the problem.
Which current television character do you identify most with? Howie Mandel (judge on “America's Got Talent”) I'm like Howie Mandel: Like him, I love ALL people and I am willing to give everyone a chance. Oftentimes we pass judgment on people that don't look alike or you don't know. I believe it is important not to judge a book by its cover and always be willing to help.
Phone number: 770-374-6458
Name: Carl S. Evans
Residence: Bembry-Hamilton subdivision
Profession: Pest control
What experience will help you in office? I have attended council meetings on a regular basis for the past 15 years . I am heavily invovled in the city . I also have several years in management experience. I regularly attended URA and Development Authority meetings. This direct public experience has taught me to listen, hear and respect all citizens. I have the ability to carefully weigh the facts and make decision for the entire community. I understand what's necessary to find common ground and forge solutions together. I have the hands-on ability to generate options, prioritize values and be fiscally responsible with public monies. (edited for length)
What issue got you into this race? No one specific issue. With four generations of my family living in the city I have a great love for the city and a desire for a better future by attracting new business and keeping the ones we have , providing safe and economic transportation to and from our city, and keeping our neighborhood's safe and clean.
Which current television character do you identify most with? Agent Gibbs from the television show “NCIS.”
Name: Marlene Larson
What experience will help you in office? Having a background in law enforcement, education and volunteer public service, I have gained administrative, organizational and leadership skills. These qualities will enable me to understand and work positively with all types and ages of people in any situation.
What issue got you into this race? A concern for others and a godly compassion to help improve the quality of life for the residents in Forest Park.
Which current television character do you identify most with? None currently however, Dale Evans who starred in “The Roy Rogers Show” is to be admired. She was outspoken in her Christian faith, stood up for the less fortunate and treated everyone with kindness. She was a courageous woman.
Phone number: 404-483-9247
City Council (Vote for Three)
Name: Arlene Ruffin Charles
Residence: 127 Arnold Place
Profession: Professional caregiver
What experience will help you in office? My international travel, serving on the Jonesboro Historic Preservation
Commission, Downtown Development Authority, volunteering at our local park events.
What issue got you into this race? The rebranding of Jonesboro ( Blue Print Jonesboro).
Which current television character do you identify most with? None
Phone number: 678-829-3333
Facebook: Arlene Charles
Name: Bobby Lester
Name: Lee Moore
What experience will help you in office? I served on the Clayton County School Board and I have had two successful businesses
What issue got you into this race? Concern got community
Which current television character do you identify most with? Sports anaylst
Phone number: 404-314-3935
Name: Billy Powell (i)
Name: Patricia G. Sebo (i)
Residence: City of Jonesboro
Profession: Administrative assistant, Clayton County Public Schools
What experience will help you in office? I have served on the Jonesboro City Council for eight years and am running for a third term. I am currently the mayor pro tem as well. My years of experience and the many projects that I have worked on for the citizens of Jonesboro, I feel, give me an edge over other candidates. I serve at the pleasure of the people and look forward to another term should I be so fortunate.
What issue got you into this race? It is my desire to see many of the projects that I have been working on come to fruition. With our newly created DDA and Main Street Program there is much to do and I want to be a part of the progress and continue to make a difference in Jonesboro.
Which current television character do you identify most with? I do not watch enough TV to identify with any character.
Phone number: 770-471-8386
Nonbinding Advisory Referendum
"Should the governing authority of the City of Jonesboro seek to lower the homestead exemption from all City of Jonesboro ad valorem taxes for municipal purposes over a period of five years to the amount of $10,000.00 of the assessed value of the homestead for residents of that city?"
Name: Dorothy Dean
What experience will help you in office? Previous business owner. Seven years experience actively involved with the community; creating Neighbors Helping Neighbors and co-creator of the Morrow Neighborhood Watch program, CERT certified and a member of Morrow Urban Redevelopment Authority to name a few.
What issue got you into this race? Having lived in Morrow for 17 years, I wanted to contribute to the continued growth and lifestyle that Morrow has to offer.
Which current television character do you identify most with? The latter version of Miss Jane Marple. Our shared love of gardening as well as her analytical approach to resolving life issues.
Name: Junior S. Jackson
Council Member Ward 1
Name: Tammie T. Hardy
Residence: Kingsland Pointe
Profession: Financial analyst/auditor
What experience will help you in office? My experience with government policy and
procedure as well as my experience with multimillion-dollar budgets.
What issue got you into this race? I am disappointed by the lack of professionalism displayed by the current councilwoman and the frivolous ways she has misused and abused taxpayer dollars. There is also a negative connotation associated with her which has a negative impact on the city and is unfair to the citizens of Riverdale.
Which current television character do you identify most with? Olivia Pope (”Scandal”)
Name: C. Stamps-Jones (i)
Council Member Ward 3
Name: Wanda Wallace (i)