3 Apply For Vacant County Commission Seat

Three people have applied for an upcoming vacancy on the Johnston County Board of Commissioners. Chairman Chad Stewart announced last month he was stepping down as District 3 commissioner effective November 30, 2021. Stewart’s term does not expire until December 2022.

At their November 1st meeting, commissioners agreed to accept applications from Nov. 2 to Nov. 8 for the vacancy. To qualify, applicants must reside in District 3 and be a member of the Republican Party.

Richard “Dickie” Braswell of Shoreline Road, Princeton; Gary Wayne Lee of Hockaday Road, Four Oaks; and Ralph L. Stewart Jr. of Stewart Road, Four Oaks submitted their names for consideration.

In his application, Mr. Braswell stated, “I realize Johnston County has some major infrastructure need (sp) and I feel that my experience in all areas of construction would allow me to help move future and existing projects along. I have always had the desire to serve my County with asked!” Braswell is in the construction industry and operates RD Braswell Construction.

Gary Lee is President and CEO of the Freewill Baptist Children’s Home, Inc. in Middlesex. Lee wrote in his application, “I value the community and have benefited from many of the resources provided. I believe I can represent the citizens in a fair, conservative, and reasonable manner. Our county is faced with many challenges and we need leaders who can help our county make progress without sacrificing the quality of life we currently enjoy. I believe there can be a balance and I’m dedicated to learning and making the best decisions for the future of Johnston County. It is a privilege, honor and my civic duty to contribute to the county I call home.”

Ralph Stewart Jr. is President of Keener Lumber and Storage. He has served on the Johnston Health Hospital Board for 14 years and three years on the Johnston County Planning Board. “I would like to fill out Chad’s term as the election process is ongoing next year. My time serving the county in the pass (sp) of helping the community is in my heart. I was born here and want the county to do well!!”

County commissioners will forward the three applications to the Johnston County Republican Party for review. Commissioners could vote on a replacement for Commissioner Stewart as early as their December 6, 2021 meeting. It is tradition at the December meeting that commissioners elect a chair and vice chair for the new year.


  1. The decision has already been made voters of Johnston County. This will seal the deal of the true essence of the men we speak of here that being Chad Stewart and his commercial rental tenant Tony “WRAL” Braswell. Remember School Board Chairman Todd Sutton got his seat by being appointed because he got the highest vote count not to get elected and denied the same treatment to Terri Tippett and now we watch Dickie Braswell who lost to Chad Stewart by just 21 votes and we all can see the gears turning?

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