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home : news : e-news March 28, 2023

12/6/2022 2:53:00 PM
Commissioners, Others Begin Terms
New Lincoln County Commisioner Jamie Lineberger's daughter held the Bible as Clerk of Court Fred Hatley administered the oath of office.
New Lincoln County Commisioner Jamie Lineberger's daughter held the Bible as Clerk of Court Fred Hatley administered the oath of office.
Chad Brown was chosen to chair the Gaston County Commissioners.[photo: Brown with District Court Judge Pennie Thrower]
Chad Brown was chosen to chair the Gaston County Commissioners.
[photo: Brown with District Court Judge Pennie Thrower]
+ view more photos
Randy Isenhower will chair the Catawba County Commissioners. 

Wayne Howard

Counties all across North Carolina saw new and re-elected County Commissioners take their oaths of office Monday. 

Gaston County

In Gaston County, Commissioners held a morning meeting, selecting Riverbend Township Commissioner Chad Brown of Stanley to serve as chairman for 2023. Brown is beginning his fourth term on the Commission, and was selected chairman for the fourth time. He also previously served as mayor of Stanley.

Commissioner Bob Hovis, representing the Crowders Mountain Township, was selected as vice chair. Hovis, who previously served as the mayor of Bessemer City, is in the middle of his second term on the board.  Brown and Hovis served in these roles in 2022, and were selected again in unanimous votes.

Also at Monday’s meeting, new Dallas Township Commissioner Cathy Cloninger and Sheriff Chad Hawkins took their respective oaths of office. Cloninger replaced Tracy Philbeck, who did not run for re-election, and Hawkins replaced Cloninger's husband, longtime Sheriff Alan Cloninger, who also chose not to seek re-election.

Brown and Gastonia Township Commissioner Tom Keigher, both of whom were unopposed, were also sworn in to new terms. Keigher is the longest active serving member of the board, now beginning his 7th term. He was first elected to the board  in 1998.

Also at Monday’s meeting, the five new and re-elected members of the Gaston County School Board (Josh Crisp, Lee Dedmon, A.M. Stephens III, Tod Kinlaw and Dot Cherry), Clerk of Court Roxann Rankin, and Soil and Water Conservation Supervisors Bill Ward and Dan Brandon took their respective oaths of office.

Former North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory provided the charge to the elected officials, while Superior Court Judge David Phillips and District Court Judge Pennie Thrower, along with Brown, conducted the ceremony. The newly elected state judicial officials – Superior Court Judge Justin Davis, District Attorney Travis Page and District Court judges Craig Collins and William “Gus” Anthony, III – will be formally sworn in to their roles in January.

Chad Hawkins, who has worked in law enforcement since 1994, was sworn as Gaston County Sheriff, succeeding Alan Cloninger, who had held the post for 18 years. Cloninger presented Hawkins with the badge he had been given by Leroy Russell when he became Sheriff.  

Catawba County

In Newton Monday night, Catawba County Commissioners Randy Isenhower, Robert Abernethy, Jr. and Cole Setzer were sworn in. Isenhower was chosen as board chair and Austin Allran was appointed  vice chair.  

Three newly elected members and one returning member of the Catawba County Board of Education were sworn in Monday evening at the regular Board of Education meeting. Don Sigmon, Tim Settlemyre, Michelle Teague, and incumbent Dr. Leslie Barnette were sworn in for a new term. The three new members joined the other board members to officially begin their duties Monday evening.

The board elected Ronn Abernathy as chair, while Dr. Leslie Barnette will serve as vice chair. Superintendent Dr. Matt Stover also recognized outgoing board members Becky Brittain, Glenn Fulbright, and Donna Lutz-Carpenter for their service to Catawba County Schools. Each outgoing member was presented with a plaque.

[Reporter's note: There is a work session of the Lincoln County Board of Education this evening, but the members who were elected and re-elected in November will be sworn in at the regular December meeting next Tuesday (Dec. 13th).]

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