Commissioner Fred Smith Will Not Seek Reelection

Commissioner Fred Smith of Clayton takes his oath from Clerk of Court Michelle Ball in December 2020

SMITHFIELD – Johnston County Commissioner Fred Smith of Clayton made it official Monday night, he will not seek reelection.

Commissioner Smith said, ” It’s been a great priviledge for me to represent Johnston County over the past 25 years. It’s time to go home. I plan to go home. I plan to serve out my term but I will not be filing for reelection.”

Mr. Smith represents District 1 and his seat is up for election in 2024. The filing period begins in December 2023.

He is the President and Owner of Fred Smith Company and the owner of FSC Ranch, LLC. He currently serves as Chairman of the Board of North State Bank is the National Cattleman’s Beef Association Region II Vice President, Policy Division.

Smith served as a Johnston County Commissioner from 2000 to 2002 and in the NC State Senate from 2002 to 2008. He was elected in 2020 to a four year term as county commissioner.

Chairman Butch Lawter said he will miss Commissioner Smith on the board. “Over the last three years, I have come to appreciate the dedication, effort, and historical perspective that Commissioner Smith brings to the Board.  His unique set of skills and knowledge has been very helpful to me as Chairman in setting goals and providing direction for the Board and the County.  The Commissioners have accomplished many things in the last three years and we have much to do in the last year of Commissioner Smith’s term.”

County Manager Rick Hester said, “I have great respect for Commissioner Smith. I have enjoyed working with him, and have learned a lot from him. Johnston County is a better place because of his leadership and dedication to public service. I will miss him.”

Four of seven seats on the board of county commissioner are up for election in 2024. The other seats are held by Commissioners Tony Braswell, April Stephens and Ted Godwin. Commissioner Braswell recently announced he will not seek another term.


  1. This man was the closest thing to a Donald J. Trump that this county or state has ever seen.  He made it so uncomfortable for our other leaders to just vote and allow the flow of free money that our school system so needed for supporting woke and transgender ideologies.  This man unapologetically tied our school funding to CRT exposure and in the process exposing our closet democrats masquerading as republicans.  

  2. 25 years of “public service,” eh? To paraphrase Ronald Reagan, is JoCo a better place to live now, than it was 25 years ago? #VoteOutIncumbents #TermLimitsNow #EndThePoliticalOligarchy

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