Darden, Murphy file for mayor’s seats

By Chase Jordan - [email protected]
Darden -
Murphy -

NEWTON GROVE — After returning to Newton Grove’s mayor’s office in 2015, Gerald Darden wants to stay a little longer.

The longtime servant recently filed to serve another term with the Sampson County Board of Elections. During the last election, Darden defeated Stephen Jackson by a slim margin.

“I would like to see the town continue to grow and prosper,” Darden said.

One of the goals for Darden is to continue with upgrades and make improvements to the town’s infrastructure. After Hurricane Matthew, Darden and other town leaders began working with Federal Emergency Management Agency.

He also wants to see the town’s Weeks Circle project improve through beautification projects. Many functions and ceremonies take place in the town’s busy roundabout. If elected, this will mark his second term since his return. Darden previously served as mayor for 13 years before he made a decision to step down in 2013. He was also a commissioner before taking the leadership role.

“I’m excited to serve the community as I’ve been doing for many years,” Darden said about his current term. “If the (voters) give me another chance I’ll certainly appreciate it.”

Garland mayor seeks new term

The local Board of Elections also reported that Garland Mayor Winifred Murphy filed. She was elected in November 2011 as a commissioner and was appointed to the position in 2012.

During the November 2013 election, Murphy was elected by the residents, making her the first African-American mayor.

While serving, Murphy assisted commissioners with many projects throughout the community. Some of them included the “Greatness of Garland” mural, revitalization of the softball league and the new Curtis D. Cain Memorial Park. Town officials held a grand opening ceremony on Thursday.

Murphy was unavailable for comment regarding her goals if she’s reelected for the position.

Commissioner filings

Cyndi Templin is looking to keep her seat on the Roseboro Council. She took the oath of office in 2016, after a seat was left vacant when Alice Butler became the mayor. The term is for four years.

Mickie Spell filed to run for a term on the Autryville Commission and for Salemburg, Donald Ray Comer has signed up to have his name on the ballot. Ted Moore is currently seeking re-election as an Alderman in Harrells.

As of Tuesday afternoon, there are no contested races for the election set for Tuesday, Nov. 7.

The filing period will end at noon Friday, July 21, at the Sampson County Board of Elections, 120 County Complex Road, Building F, Suite 110, Clinton.



By Chase Jordan

[email protected]

Municipal Election 2017

According to the Sampson County Board of Elections, those who have filed through Tuesday afternoon include:

*(terms expiring in parentheses)

Autryville (mayor, two commissioners)

Mickie Spell

Clinton (mayor, three Council seats)

• Lew Starling – Mayor

• Daniel Ruggles- Dist. 1 Council Seat

• Darue Bryant – Dist. 5 Council Seat

Garland (mayor, three commissioners)

Winifred Murphy – Mayor

Austin Brown – Council Seat

Harrells (two aldermen)

• Ted Moore

• Kim Johnson

Newton Grove (mayor, three commissioners)

• Gerald Darden – Mayor

Roseboro (two commissioners)

• Cyndi Templin

Salemburg (three commissioners)

• Richard A. “Dickie”Walters Jr. (incumbent)

• Donald Ray Comer

Turkey (two commissioners)

• Randy M. Blackburn