07/15/12 — District 1: Pritchard v. Headen

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District 1: Pritchard v. Headen

By Ty Johnson
Published in News on July 15, 2012 1:50 AM

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Michael Headen

Kyle Pritchard

Incumbent Michael Headen will defend his seat from challenger and Goldsboro newcomer Kyle Pritchard in the race for the Goldsboro City Council's District 1 seat.

For the 27-year-old Pritchard, the campaign got off to a rough start when a District 1 resident challenged his candidacy less than 10 days after he filed to run.

The Wayne County Board of Elections ruled Pritchard was eligible to run at a hearing April 3, though, and Pritchard said he feels the electorate has moved past that to focus on more important issues.

"It was just a small bump in the road," he said. "People are focusing more on the potential and ability of each candidate to perform the job."

He said he hopes his experience -- as manager of Comfort Suites on North Park Drive -- will lead voters to choose him when they go to the polls.

He said that most important to him is that there be a two-way street when it comes to communication between council members and their constituents.

"The only way we can do our job is for them to know what challenges we face," he said. "If we engage the citizens we can accomplish a lot more."

Headen said his vision for the city is for it to continue to grow and attract business and industry, as well as an improvement in the school system.

He also sees the city's role in reducing crime in the area through programs.

"We should be curbing the violence," he said. "We need to support those programs that are important to our youth."

Headen also said the city needs to take care of its historic district.

Both candidates said they feel they have similar views and ideas, but Headen said his experience in public office has given him a better understanding of how to approach the issues facing the city.

"I feel that having been in office for four years, I have an idea of what the concerns are," he said.

Headen, 55, a licensed psychologist, lives with his wife, Nancy.