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Three seek Charles Town mayor's job

March 31, 2005|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - Randy Hilton is out and three people are looking to take his place.

Hilton, who has served as mayor of Charles Town for nine years, said this week that he will not seek another term in the May 26 city election.

Hilton filed papers to run, but changed his mind due to family illness.

Three people have set their sights on the mayor's job.

The candidates are Shirley Calhoun, Peggy A. Smith and Gene Perkins.

Hilton said Wednesday he cannot remember a time in recent history when that many people have run for mayor.

In the past, it has been tough to get people to run for mayor and if there was a contested race, it usually was between two candidates, Hilton said.

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"This is democracy. It's good to see people getting involved," said Hilton, who believes the increased interest in the job can be attributed to growth-related issues in the city and Jefferson County.

Calhoun has lived in Charles Town since July and offers consulting services to nonprofit groups at no charge. Calhoun, of 401 N. Mildred St., said she helps nonprofit groups with public relations work, such as helping them to develop press releases.

Smith is a former president and current member of the board of directors of the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce. She is a lifelong county resident and has been involved in a number of organizations.

Perkins lives at the corner of Samuel and Hunter streets in Charles Town and is on the city's tree committee, which oversees the care of city-owned trees, Hilton said.

Four council seats are up for grabs in the election. Current city council members Violet Lowery, who represents Ward 1; Tim Robinson, who represents Ward 2; and Russell Miller, who represents Ward 3, are not running for re-election. All offices have four year terms, Hilton said.

In the Ward 1 race, Cyrus Uible, of 214 W. Liberty St.; Harry E. Yates III, address unavailable; and Sandra Slusher McDonald of 317 N. Lawrence St., will face each other.

In the Ward 2 race, the candidates are Victoria Frye of 207 S. West St. and Amy Schmitt of 15 Colston Road.

In the Ward 3 race, Doug Vaira of 311 S. Mildred St. will face Donald Watson Clendening of 533 Brooke St.

In the Ward 4 race, incumbent Geraldine Willingham of 401 E. Washington St., will face Pamela Villeneuve, of 121 N. Mildred St.

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