Monday, December 9, 2019
Dec. 9, 2019

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Incumbents dominate early candidate filings in Clark County

By , Columbian Staff Writer
Published: May 13, 2019, 11:29am

The first round of candidates for various local offices are officially running, as names started pouring in Monday morning to kick off filing week.

There weren’t any surprises in the first batch of names that came out Monday, as a total of 68 candidates filed for 59 offices by 5 p.m. There are 94 seats up for grabs in elections this year, and candidates have through Friday to file to run.

Jennifer Snider filed to run for a judge seat on Clark County Superior Court, a position she was appointed to by Gov. Jay Inslee in April. She was sworn in earlier this month, taking over for retiring Clark County Superior Court Judge James Rulli.

Cowlitz County Superior Court Judge Anne Cruser filed to run for a judge seat in the Washington State Court of Appeals, Division II. She was appointed to the position earlier this year by Inslee.

Gary Medvigy filed to run for the Clark County Council. He was appointed to the open seat in January, taking over the seat left vacant when Councilor Eileen Quiring began her term as council chair. Battle Ground Councilor Adrian Cortes filed to run against Medvigy for the county seat.

Vancouver City Council Position 6 is expected to be one of the busier races this election season, with five people announcing before filing week their intention to run. On Monday, two candidates filed: Jeanne Stewart, who served as a Republican member of the Clark County Council and prior to that spent 12 years on the city council, and Camas urban planner Sarah Fox. Bart Hansen, Ty Stober and Erik Paulsen all filed to run for re-election for their respective Vancouver City Council seats. Stober will face off against local bail bondsman and pastor David Regan, who also filed Monday. Regan was a finalist during the city council’s appointment process to replace Alishia Topper after she was elected Clark County treasurer in November. Her seat ultimately went to Paulsen.

Elsewhere around the county, Camas Mayor Shannon Turk filed to run for re-election. She was appointed to the seat in November, taking over for former Mayor Scott Higgins, who resigned in September.  Woodland Mayor Will Finn also filed to run for re-election.

Former Battle Ground Mayor Phillip Johnson filed to run for re-election for his city council seat, Battle Ground Deputy Mayor Shane Bowman plans on running for re-election and Candy Bonneville filed to run for Position 3 on the Battle Ground City Council. She ran for office in 2015, but lost to Johnson. Position 3 is currently held by Steven Phelps.

Camas Councilors Bonnie Carter, Deanna Rusch, Greg Anderson and Don Chaney all filed to run for re-election, as did Councilors Jennifer Lindsay, Darren Wertz and Sandra Day in Ridgefield. Ray Kutch, Michelle Wagner and Ernie Suggs also filed to run for re-election to their Washougal City Council seats.

Matt Swindell, a former Ridgefield city councilor and Ridgefield School District board member, filed to run for a city council seat in Ridgefield. He’s currently a member of the Clark County Planning Commission. He’ll run against Dana Ziemer, co-chair of Ridgefield School District’s Capital Facilities Advisory Committee. Former councilor Katelyn Listek is running for a seat on the Yacolt Town Council.

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Mike Benjamin filed to run for re-election for his seat on the Woodland City Council, and he has a challenger in Monte Smith; both filed to run Monday.

There are numerous school board seats up for election this year. In Camas, the entire current board — Corey McEnry, Doug Quinn, Tracey Malone, Erika Cox and Connie Hennessey — all filed to run for re-election for their seats. Victoria Bradford, Rob Perkins and Rachael Rogers filed to run for re-election to their seats on the Evergreen Public Schools board.

Other school board members who are running for re-election and filed on Monday are Mark Watrin with Battle Ground Public Schools, Tanis Morris with the Mount Pleasant School District, Cory Chase and Angela Hancock from the Washougal School District, Ridgefield School District board members Joe Vance, Scott Gullickson and Brett Jones, and Rick Syring and Joyce Cooper from the Green Mountain School District.

Caressa Milgrove, a mother of two young boys in the district, and Tracie Barrows, a school psychologist for Evergreen Public Schools, both filed to run for seats on the Vancouver Public Schools board. Milgrove is running for Position 1 on the board, along with Thomas Higdon and incumbent Dale Rice, who both filed Monday. Barrows filed to run for Position 5 on the board.

An open seat on the Port of Vancouver commission saw two candidates file: Jack Burkman, a former Vancouver city councilor, and accountant Dan Barnes.

Darren LaFavor and Chris Pfeifer will both run for a seat on the Clark County Fire District 6 commission. Scott Anders filed to run for re-election for his seat on the Clark County Fire District 3 commission, Roy Rhine will seek re-election for his seat on the Clark County Fire District 5 commission and Gary Hegedorn filed to run for a seat on the Fire District 10 commission.

Larry Bartel filed to run for re-election for his seat on Clark County Fire & Rescue’s commission, and Joshua Seeds and Michael Taggart both filed to kick off re-election bids for their seats on East County Fire and Rescue’s commission.

Port of Ridgefield Commissioner Scott Hughes filed to run again for his seat and Neil Kimsey will run for re-election to his seat in the Clark Regional Wastewater District.

In the cemetery districts, Jeanette Jester will seek re-election for a seat on Cemetery District No. 1, Bruce Summers filed to run again for his seat on Cemetery District No. 5 and Gary Bruner and Dale Venema will run for re-election for their respective seat on Cemetery District No. 6.

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