The November meeting of the Johnston County Board of Commissioners was the last official meeting for three outgoing county leaders.
Commissioners Cookie Pope, Allen Mims and Lee Jackson will not return in December when new members are sworn in to represent their respective districts.
Mrs. Pope, a Cleveland resident, has served since 1994. She is a legal assistant for Mast Law Firm. She decided earlier this year not to seek re-election and made that announce on WTSB.
“I have truly enjoyed serving the citizens of Johnston County and I thank them for allowing me to be a part of the Board of Commissioners for twenty-four years. Serving was my civic duty.”
“Johnston County is truly blessed with local government staff and employees, a community college, hospitals, public schools staffed with the best teachers, large and small businesses, good- neighbor industries, farm families who produce commodities and strong citizens, and our churches who keep us grounded in the faith. We continue to care for the less fortunate, provide for mental health and care for the youth and our elders.”
In a final thought, Cookie added, ” To my fellow Commissioners, You will always be a part of my life and I think of you as the ‘Brothers I Never Had’. Thanks to my family for loving me and supporting my efforts to serve. Husband Jackie can put away his yard sign that reads – Wife Wanted.”
Commissioner Allen Mims of Clayton was first elected in 1998. The owner and operator of Leallen Farms, Mims ran for re-election but was defeated.
“It has been an honor and a privilege to serve the citizens of Johnston County for the last 20 years. I am proud that we have not raised the property tax rate in that time and government has provided services while living within its means as every citizen does,” Mims said.
“Johnston County has grown and prospered making it a great place to live, work or have a business and I hope history will judge me favorably on the votes and decisions that I made while in office. I am also very proud of our employees for they are truly the ones that make our county government operate on a day to day basis. And we as county commissioners get a lot of comments on just how well it does compared to others. To the citizens, thanks for the opportunity.”
Commissioner Lee Jackson of Smithfield was appointed in December 2017 to fill out the unexpired term of Commissioner Keith Branch who resigned shortly after winning election last year. Jackson was not successful in an election bid having lost in the May Republican Primary.
Jackson, the Managing Partner at Dees, Jackson, Jackson & Associates, P.A in Smithfield said, “I appreciate the opportunity to have served the Citizens of Johnston County. Hopefully, my service on the Board of Commissioners added a new perspective and helped the County to continue to grow and prosper.”
Pope’s District 5 seat will be filled in December by retired Smithfield Fire Chief Patrick Harris. Mim’s District 7 seat will be filled by former Clayton Town Councilman Butch Lawter. Jackson will be replaced by former Commissioner Tony Braswell of Pine Level for the District 6 seat.