Advocate forum to be held Monday

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 14, 2004

Staff Report

Candidates for the three open Greenville City Council seats will meet Monday in a political forum.

Candidates from Districts One, Two and Three will take part in the forum from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 16, at the Greenville High School auditorium.

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There is no charge for candidates to participate and are encouraged to take part.

The forum will follow this procedure:

Candidates will be given three minutes each to introduce themselves.

Then each candidate will be asked random questions prepared in advance.

Following this portion of the forum, audience members will then submit questions for the candidates.

&uot;I see this forum as a responsibility of the community’s newspaper to provide as much information to the voters of Greenville on the candidates and on the issues we all face,&uot; said Greenville Newspapers’ publisher Dennis Palmer.

&uot;It also provides the voters with an opportunity to see each candidate and hear what they have to say and make a voting decision based on what they hear. It’s also a wonderful opportunity for the candidates to let the voters know what they stand for and what their agenda will be should they be chosen by the voters for the office they seek.&uot;

This is the second political forum the Advocate has hosted this year.

The first was held for candidates for the June 1 primary.

According to Managing Editor Jay Thomas, this new forum reflects the newspaper’s dedication to being the most reliable news source in Greenville.

&uot;We believe informed voters are smart voters,&uot; Thomas said.

&uot;We strive to give our readers as much information about the candidates as possible.

When they step into the voting booth on Aug. 24, they’ll remember what we reported and what the candidates said.

They’ll base their votes on that&uot;

Thomas said Advocate readers have relied on the publication for fair, objective and accurate campaign and election coverage since 1865 and he intends to make this the best year possible.

Palmer said residents should attend regardless of the district they live in.

&uot;We believe everyone should take an interest in these races because the council may be divided by districts, but the council works as a whole,&uot; he said.

Also, Palmer offered the newspaper’s thanks for the use of the GHS facilities.

&uot;Once again, we owe our thanks to Dr. Kathy Murphy, Superintendent Mike Reed and the Butler County Board of Education for allowing the use of Greenville High School’s auditorium for this event,&uot; he said. &uot;The facilities were great for the county political forum and we believe it will be great for this one as well. Assistant Principal Mike Gunter went way beyond the call of duty for the last one with all he did to help us prepare.&uot;

Moderating the forum will be Ralph Stacy, who is president and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce Association of Alabama.

&uot;We are pleased that Ralph’s schedule is allowing him to moderate our forum,&uot; Thomas said.

&uot;His humor and political insight will make for an interesting evening.&uot;

The candidates who have confirmed they will participate are as follows:

District One

Susan S. Murphy who is seeking her first full term to the Council. She is the widow of the late John D. Murphy and is a longtime resident of Greenville. Murphy was appointed to fill the un-expired term of Gale Slagley.

Jean Thompson is seeking her first political office.

She is the director of the Greenville campus of Lurleen B. Wallace Community College.

District Two

Ed Sims is the incumbent for District Two and is seeking his first full term.

He was appointed to fill the un-expired term of Probate Judge Steve Norman.

Sims is owns and operates Championship Trophy and Sporting Goods in Greenville.

Percy C. Nixon, a civil engineer, is seeking his first office.

He has experience with various projects such as water maintenance and road construction.

District Three

Otto Duke is seeking re-election to City Council for a second term.

Tommy Ryan is seeking his first elected office for the District Three seat.

He currently employed with Terrell enterprises of Greenville.

He was owner and operator of Greenville Credit Bureau until 1998.

Phillip Graham is seeking his first political office.

He has lived in Greenville since 1976 and is the general manager of Super Foods of Greenville.

The public is cordially invited to attend.