Generic voting ballot

The filing period for candidates in the 2020 elections opened Monday at noon.

Here is a look at some candidates who have announced their plans to run for office, and their statements on their candidacy. Lynn Gullett has also filed for re-election for superior court judge, according to her social media accounts:

Vickie Sawyer

Sen. Vickie Sawyer announced recently her intention to run for re-election for District 34.

“I am blessed to be given this time to serve my community as a N.C. state Senator,” she said in a release.

Sawyer began her tenure in August 2018 after defeating primary opponent, former Sen. Bob Rucho. Due to redistricting, she was appointed early to serve out the remaining term of Sen. David Curtis, who resigned early.

“As I look back on the past year and a half, I am proud of our accomplishments,” Sawyer said I a release. “As a freshman senator, I was the primary sponsor on 28 bills and seven of them were signed into law. I have taken 618 eligible votes which represents 99% attendance rate. Quite simply, I am in Raleigh to work for us.”

Among her several successful bills was SB297, which formed the Cancer Research Advisory Panel that directs the UNC Collabortory to set a baseline of how cancer cluster research will occur in North Carolina.

Their work begins Dec. 11. Early in her term, SB77 established Iredell County to be included in the hurricane relief efforts which gave access to additional funding for farmers.

Along with her counterparts in the House, she included budget funds for Iredell and Yadkin counties designated for projects including the Statesville Airport, Iredell County Agricultural Fairgrounds, Hands of Hope Medical Clinic, Iredell Statesville Schools and Town of Mooresville Recreation Department.

Sawyer plans to file Dec. 5 after returning from meetings in Raleigh.

Grey Mills

Lifelong Republican and Mooresville resident Grey Mills will seek election to the 95th District in the N.C. House of Representatives — the same seat he occupied from 2009-2012. John Fraley, who has represented the 95th District since 2014, previously announced he will not seek re-election.

“I am thrilled for the opportunity to once again serve the people of Iredell County in the N.C. House,” Mills stated in a news release.

“In the past several years, I’ve been blessed to spend time with my family, watching my children grow. Now that they’re a bit older, I would be honored to work with our district’s citizens to continue the great work that Rep. John Fraley has accomplished and continue creating a strong, prosperous state that our children will one day be proud to inherit.”

Mills, 53, was elected as Iredell County Republican Party Chairman in 2003 and 2005 and has been appointed to four two-year terms with the Iredell County Board of Elections since 2013, serving as member, secretary and chair.

In his previous bids for the House, the National Rifle Association endorsed Mills and gave him an “A” rating, the release states. He was also endorsed by other groups.

A graduate of Mooresville High School, Mills received a bachelor of science degree in social science and education from Appalachian State University in 1990, then went on to earn his juris doctor degree from Regent University School of Law in 1994.

While there, he served as congressional intern for U.S. Sen. Jesse Helms. The son of former small business owners and lifelong Mooresville residents, Mills was an educator and N.C. Assistant District Attorney before opening a law practice in Mooresville in 1998. He is currently corporate officer/attorney for Randy Marion Automotive.

Gene Houpe

Commissioner Houpe filed for re-election when the Board of Elections opened for the candidates Monday.

“It has been an honor and privilege to serve the citizens of Iredell County,” he said. “We have worked hard to promote balanced growth, a growing economy, and support for our schools which provide a trained workforce.”

Houpe serves on multiple task forces, boards, and committees as a commissioner. He stated in a news release that he is proud of the network he has helped to establish with other local, state, and federal officials, on behalf of Iredell County.

Additionally, Houpe was elected as the District 12 Director of the North Caroline Association of County Commissioners, representing eight counties in this region.

Houpe was the second commissioner to ever be elected to this position. Through his roles, Houpe advocates for grant funding on the state and federal level, which has benefited Iredell County for road, airport, and school projects.

“I hope to continue working with other elected officials and citizens to ensure Iredell County continues to be a great place to live, work, and raise a family,” Houpe said.

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