17 file for local elections

Published 8:56 pm Tuesday, June 8, 2010

If a retired Norfolk Public Schools teacher who filed to run for City Council late Tuesday gained the necessary 125 certified signatures, every City Council and School Board seat up for election in November will be a contested race.

Both elected bodies have four borough seats — Chuckatuck, Cypress, Holy Neck and Suffolk — up for a vote. The Chuckatuck representatives on both panels have opted out of a run for re-election.

City Councilman Joe Barlow and School Board member William Whitley both will sit this race out. Barlow was appointed to finish someone else’s City Council term in January 2005, and was elected to the seat in 2006. He had also previously served on the Council for six months in 1998, when he completed Delegate Chris Jones’ term.

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Whitley, the current vice chairman of the School Board, has been on the board for 18 years and retired from Suffolk Public Schools.

Competing for Barlow’s seat will be car salesman and Economic Development Authority member Mike Duman and retired health care administrator M. Caroline Martin.

In other City Council races, retired Norfolk Public Schools teacher Bill Newsome has filed, but is not yet certified, to run against incumbent and Northrop Grumman instructor Charles F. Brown. Newsome turned in his signatures about 30 minutes before Tuesday’s deadline, and Suffolk Voter Registrar Sharon Thornhill still was checking them when the night ended.

In the Holy Neck borough, incumbent Jeffrey Gardy will defend his seat against J.B. Varney.

In the Suffolk borough, Alvin E. Copeland will challenge incumbent Charles D. Parr Sr.

On School Board, three women will vie for the seat Whitley is vacating. Linda W. Bouchard, Dorothy Bland Gamble and Mary Hill each gathered enough signatures for a place on the ballot.

In other School Board races, Planning Commissioner William H. Goodman seeks to unseat the board’s current chairwoman, Lorraine B. Skeeter, in the Cypress borough.

In Holy Neck, two retired educators will fight for the seat — incumbent Enoch C. Copeland and former Nansemond-Suffolk Academy upper school headmaster William Owen.

In the Suffolk borough, challenger Deborah Wahlstrom hopes to unseat incumbent Michael J. Debranski.

In a larger race that Suffolk voters also will see on their ballots, Congressman J. Randy Forbes (R-4th) is defending his seat against Democrat Wynne V.E. LeGrow.