District Court race headlines judicial ballot

Published 11:06 am Friday, October 29, 2010

Judicial races for Roanoke-Chowan voters will be headlined by a local race for District Court Judge.

Among the many choices voters have among the non-partisan judgeships, one features a race between incumbent District Court Judge Alfred W. Kwasikpui and Murfreesboro Attorney Thomas L. Jones Jr.

Judge Kwasikpui has served as a District Court Judge for nearly 20 years, having been first elected to the post in 1990. He was chosen as Chief District Court Judge in 1991.

Jones has 30 years of experience as an attorney and operates a law firm in Murfreesboro.

In addition to the local race, North Carolina voters will select one  member of the North Carolina Supreme Court. Two current members of the North Carolina Court of Appeals will vie for the seat of Edward Thomas Brady, who did not file for reelection.

The two justices are Robert C. “Bob” Hunter, who is in his second term on the Court of Appeals, and Barbara Jackson, a first-term judge.

The North Carolina Court of Appeals will have three seats up for election.

First-term judge Anna Marie Calabria will  face the challenge of District Court Judge Jane Gray.

The second seat is the one currently held by Judge Rick Elmore. The first-term judge will face the challenge of Steven Walker,  who has worked for Justice Brady in the Supreme Court for the past five years.

The final seat on the court will be between Judge Martha Greer, who is finishing her first term on the board. She will be challenged by Dean R. Poirier. He is an adjunct professor at Mt. Olive College and an Appeals Referee for the North Carolina Employment Security Commission.

One other judicial race will be on the ballot for voters.

In the first of its kind, North Carolina voters will choose a first, second and third choice for the North Carolina Court of Appeals seat that was vacated by the appointment of Judge Jim Wynn to the Federal Court of Appeals.

A total of 13 candidates have filed for the seat, meaning the likelihood of one candidate receiving a large percentage of the vote is unlikely. That means voters will choose their favorite candidate. They will then select candidates two and three so that if there is a runoff and the voters’ candidate is not among the candidates, their vote will still be counted if they chose one of the candidates second or third.

The candidates include:

John F. Bloss – an attorney with Robertson Medlin & Bloss, PLLC;

J. Wesley Casteen – a lawyer who maintains his own practice in New Hanover County;

Chris Dillon – a lawyer who helped start CapStone Bank;

Jewel Ann Farlow – a lawyer who owns her own practice;

Daniel E. Garner – the Executive Legal Specialist to the North Carolina Commissioner of Banks;

Stan Hammer – a litigation partner at Wyatt Early Harris Wheeler;

Mark E. Klass – a Judicial District 22B Superior Court Judge;

Doug McCullough – a former North Carolina Court of Appeals Judge who works with Stubbs & Perdue;

Anne Middleton – a lawyer in the Appellate Section of the North Carolina Attorney General’s Office;

Harry E. Payne Jr. – a former North Carolina Secretary of Labor;

John Sullivan – a sole practitioner in private law practice;

Cressie Thigpen – a former special Superior Court Judge who was appointed to fill Judge Wynn’s seat;  and

Pamela M. Vesper – a lawyer with the North Carolina Real Estate Commission.