02/18/08 — Parks will run for seat on Duplin commission

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Parks will run for seat on Duplin commission

By Matthew Whittle
Published in News on February 18, 2008 1:45 PM

Calypso resident Frances Parks announced last week her intention to seek the Democratic nomination in May for the Duplin County Board Commissioners District 1 seat, now that L.S. Guy has announced that he will be retiring at the end of his current term.

Ms. Parks, a former Duplin County elementary school teacher, said she is running in hopes of continuing the good work currently being done by the board.

"I can't say that I disagree with them. They certainly have had my support," she said.

If elected, she hopes to maintain and improve the county's emergency medical services and fire departments, as well as the sheriff's office and the services on aging department.

She also promised to be fiscally responsible -- working to "let the money we have in our fund balance remain in our fund balance," and to "maintain our present property tax level."

Additionally, she pledged she would push the board to take steps to protect "the land we live on, the air we breathe and the water we drink," as well as support any so-called green industries hoping to come to Duplin County -- such as those looking to use hog waste as an alternative fuel source.

Most importantly, though, she promised to give her "whole effort to support and improve education in Duplin County."

"I will work to make our education system the best it can be and should be for our students at all levels, pre-kindergarten through James Sprunt Community College," the two-time county Teacher of the Year said.

She hopes that because of her time in the school system, she will be able to bring a new level of insight to the county commission -- even though she retired nine years ago.

"I certainly believe I can add a lot of strength to the board because of the 32 years I was there," she said. "I think because I've been there, I have an understanding of it."

Ms. Parks, 66, explained she is running in large part because of a desire to continue serving the community after years of volunteering in her church, Calypso Presbyterian, helping with the Boy Scouts, Meals on Wheels, serving on the Calypso Adjustment/Planning Board, Goshen Medical Center Board of Directors and with other organizations.

"When I look back at my life, I feel like everyone's life is lived in phases, and in this next phase of mine, I want to continue what I've always done in my life -- serve people. That's why I'm running for county commissioner," she said. "I feel like because I have regularly attended county commissioner meetings, I come to it with at least a little bit of knowledge, and that now is the time for me to serve the county."

Filing for the May primaries will end at noon Feb. 29.