Note: This is the fifth of five TownTalk segments to provide election coverage for the upcoming Oct. 10 municipal elections in Henderson. Today, we’ll hear from the candidates for the Ward 4 at-large seat.
WIZS posed the same questions to all 17 candidates running for the five races – mayor, Ward 1 and Ward 2 seats, as well as the at-large seats in Wards 3 and 4.
Some of the candidates responded to the questions in written form and others were recorded in phone interviews and their responses were transcribed for inclusion in this story. Online readers will notice direct quotes in the answers; information not in direct quotes is paraphrased to provide concise text and readability.
The candidates’ responses appear in alphabetical order, beginning with George Daye, and continuing with Tami Walker. Lora Durham, who also filed for the Ward 4 at-large seat, did not provide responses, despite numerous attempts to reach her by phone call, text message, email and correspondence via the U.S. Postal Service.
Early voting begins Thursday, Sept. 21 and ends Oct. 7.
1. Why are you running for elected office?
George Daye: “I filed because I was interested in going back (on the City Council) and wanted to work with the new manager. The day I filed, that was what I wanted.” He said that when sitting Council member Jason Spriggs filed for mayor, he was spurred on to file for the seat he had previously held. “Jason filed for the mayor role and I just feel like I could go there and do some good,” Daye said.
Tami Walker: “I am running for elected office because I have served my country and now I am ready to serve my hometown community.”
2. What’s your platform?
Daye: Daye acknowledged in a telephone interview that he had second thoughts about filing for the Ward 4 at-large seat, but “if they vote for me, I’ll do the best I can.”
Walker: Walker listed the following topics: Senior citizens’ rights and assistance, assisting hometown veterans, the disabled and active-duty, as well as support and inclusion of youth. “Children deserve a great education, neighborhood and support system of family and friends to develop into great citizens,” Walker said.
3. What are the top three issues that, in your opinion, this city faces in the next two years? Five years?
Neither candidate directly addressed the question about the top three issues that Henderson faces in the near future.
4. As an elected official, how will you address these issues?
Daye: Daye said that, during his previous term on the City Council, he strived to be attentive during meetings to conduct the business of the city. “When I was on the council, I was in business. I saw some people that were sitting in the council meeting and (they) would answer their telephones. I thought that was a disgrace. Despite effects of severe asthma, Daye said he took his role seriously.
Walker: Walker stated that she would address the issues through “education and action (and by) using the resources available to me as an elected official. “
5. What is your experience in the public sector?
Daye: Daye has served previously on the City Council in the Ward 4 at-large seat. He opted not to run for re-election when Jason Spriggs showed interest in running for the seat.
Walker: “ I am a retired veteran, a Vance County schools retiree, a volunteer and humanitarian. I enjoy interacting with the public sector.”
6. If you are a newcomer to politics, what role do you see yourself playing as a member of an elected body?
Walker: “I see myself as a team member listening to my community, and doing my best to grow in my role, while using resources to find resolutions to the issues that my community brings forth.”
7. Please share any additional information you want voters to know about you.
Daye: “When I went and filed,” Daye said, “I was gung ho” to run for Council. But, he said, “the spirit hasn’t hit me yet to get out there and fight for that position.” If he is elected, however, he said he would do his best to serve the people of Henderson.
Walker: Walker said she looks forward to serving her community as a Council member. “This is my neighborhood and my community,” she stated. (It’s) where I grew up. The people are nice and welcoming. Growing up near Pinkston Street School, Walker said she could hear the school bell ring from her house. It was a short walk to elementary school for her in 1974 or 1975, right after integration, and then she walked a little farther to Henderson Junior High. “I had one of the best childhood ever,” she said.