Candidates for the partisan and non-partisan seats up for election this year began throwing their names into the hat Monday morning for local and state positions representing Cherokee.
By Tuesday afternoon, most of the county’s incumbents qualified to seek re-election, including two county commissioners, one school board member and almost all of the county’s representatives in the state House and Senate.
Rick Davies, Cherokee GOP chairman, said Tuesday’s crowd of candidates was smaller than Monday, but that’s normal.
“Historically, it usually picks up toward the end of the week because people are in the throes of deciding whether they want to run,” he said.
Cherokee Democratic Party head Georgette Thaler said late Tuesday she didn’t expect any Democrats to qualify locally but she was more hopeful for races on the state level.
“I’m not a fan of putting somebody on the ticket just to have someone,” she added.
Qualifying will continue until noon Friday for candidates who wish to seek office in the May 20 election.
Cherokee County’s Republican and Democratic parties will qualify candidates for partisan races for the county school board, the board of commissioners and the office of the solicitor general at the conference center at the Bluffs. Any independent candidates for those jobs can qualify at the Cherokee County Elections Office.
State House and Senate candidates will sign up at the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office in Atlanta, as will candidates for Cherokee Superior Court judge.
The winners of Republican or Democratic nominations will go on to compete in the November general election. Winners of the non-partisan elections, however, will be chosen in the May 20 race.
Following is a list of candidates who have qualified for Cherokee County elections so far:
State Representative, District 20
● Rep. Michael Caldwell (R-Woodstock) (I)
State Representative, District 21
● Rep. Scot Turner (R-Holly Springs) (I)
State Representative, District 22
● Meagan Biello —Republican
State Representative, District 23
● Rep. Mandi Ballinger (R-Canton) (I)
State Senator, District 21
● Sen. Brandon Beach (R-Alpharetta) (I)
State Senator, District 14
● Sen. Bruce A. Thompson (R-White)
Board of Commissioners Chairman
● Jacqueline Archer, Republican
● Leavitt B. “Buzz” Ahrens (I) Republican
Cherokee County Commissioners
● District 1 – Harry Johnston (I) Republican
● District 4 - Kenneth Scott Gordon, Republican
Cherokee County Board of Education
● District 3 — John Harmon
● District 4 — Robert Rechsteiner (Rick Steiner), (I), Republican
● District 5 — Clark Menard
● District 6 — Mike Chapman
Cherokee County Solicitor General
● Jessica Moss, (I), Republican
● Judge of Superior Court, Blue Ridge, District 008
● Superior Court Judge N. Jackson Harris (I).