12/12/13 — Light announces run for district attorney

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Light announces run for district attorney

By John Joyce
Published in News on December 12, 2013 1:46 PM

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Terry Light

Assistant District Attorney Terry Light has announced she will run for district attorney for Wayne, Lenoir and Greene counties, hoping to fill the job being vacated by Branny Vickory, who has said he will retire next year.

The official announcement came via press release.

Ms. Light, an assistant district attorney under Vickory for 16 years, is running on the Democratic ticket and pledges to be a "district attorney who stands up for the people."

Vickory was appointed to the position in August 1998 by then-Gov. Jim Hunt, and ran successfully in each election ever since.

"I planned on only doing the job for five years or so, gaining some experience and going back into private practice," he said.

He still might return to the private sector, Vickory said, but remains focused on doing the job he was elected to do until the end of his last day in office.

Ms. Light boasts a lengthy service record in the courtroom as a prosecutor in Goldsboro, Kinston and Snow Hill, and says she has a proven record of public service.

"The job doesn't stop at the courthouse doors," Ms. Light said.

Ms. Light is president of the Downtown Goldsboro Development Corp., a board member of the Peace Foundation and the Humane Society and a member of the Law Enforcement Association and Three Eagles Rotary.

She began practicing law in 1996 after attending East Carolina University and Campbell School of Law.

Ms. Light has also served as an adjunct professor at Wesleyan University and at Wayne Community College.

Should she be elected, Ms. Light said she will work on the office's efficiency, seeking to reduce the amount of time it takes to prosecute violent crimes.

"The longer it takes to prosecute these cases, the harder it gets for us. Witnesses get lost," she said.

Ms. Light decided to run for the top law office in Wayne, Lenoir and Greene counties because it is in each county's best interest to have an experienced district attorney, she said.

"The D.A. needs to be able to communicate with the public. I am an approachable person who believes communication makes the (D.A.s) office run smoother," she said.

Ms. Light is, for now, running unopposed. She did say, however, that she does not fear running against any potential candidates.

"Terry is a great friend and a great lawyer. She is a first class trial attorney," Vickory said, stopping just short of an endorsement.

He said there is still plenty of time for other potential candidates to enter the race and he is content for now to let the process play out.

Ms. Light has a campaign team in place and has already begun fundraising and attending public speaking engagements, with many more on the horizon.

"We'll be doing a lot after the first of the year," she said. For now, and throughout the campaign, Ms. Light said she remains focused on putting "people ahead of politics."