SMITHFIELD – April Stephens, a local business owner and realtor, was appointed Monday to fill out to unexpired term of Larry Wood on the Johnston County Board of Commissioners.
Twelve candidates applied for the seat following the February 28 resignation of Commissioner Wood.
Commissioners reviewed all 12 applications and submitted their top 5 picks for interviews. The board interviewed the five finalists and April Stephens was selected. The finalists included Stephens, Adam Caldwell, William Neighbors, Freddie Stancil, and Timothy Callahan.
In her application, Stephens wrote, “I am very passionate about the future of Johnston County and the opportunity to have a voice in the advancement and preservation of the county. It is my goal to play a part in ensuring there is collaboration with other state & local entities to keep Johnston County first.”
Commissioner Ted Godwin said he was not opposed to Stephens appointment but early-on had committed his support to Adam Caldwell, a member of the Johnston County Planning Board who had applied.
In a 5-to-1 vote, with Commissioner Godwin voting against, Stephens was appointed to fill out the District 1 term through December 2022.
A special election will take place in November 2022. The winner will complete the District 1 term through December 2024.
Commissioner Tony Braswell said the Johnston County Republican Party had also selected Ms. Stephens for the position. Braswell said the Republican party was looking for a candidate that vould also be on the November ballot.
Both a Republican and Democratic candidate, selected by each political party, will be on the November ballot. Each party must submit the name of their candidate to the Johnston County Board of Elections by August 2022.
Commissioner-elect Stephens will be sworn in at 2:00pm this afternoon (Monday) to the board.