Local qualifying even more uneventful than usual, which is saying something


Qualifying for political office ended on a rainy Friday afternoon downtown.

"Midterm election years" – 2022, 2018, 2014, etc. – are relatively action-packed on the state level, most prominently the governor's race. On a local level, however, it's always a lighter voting calendar around here, with only two School Board seats and one State Court Judge position on the ballot. 

Among those three positions, there are exactly three candidates, and all three will run unopposed and not have to campaign this year

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Paul W. Hitchcock, pictured above in the middle, paid the relatively hefty $1,854 qualifying fee that State Court Judge candidates are required to pay and will be the only name on the ballot later this year. Incumbent Alan Thrower is not seeking re-election. According to one of his Facebook posts from earlier this week, Hitchcock has "had the privilege of living and working in and around Baldwin County since moving here in 2007, when I left the Piedmont Judicial Circuit District Attorney's Office to join my father and brother at Hitchcock & Hitchcock, P.C." Added the Facebook post: "Our firm, which has been in Sparta for over 50 years, opened an office in Milledgeville in 2016, and I have made many new friendships, both professionally and personally, since then...I have a passion for serving my community both professionally and through volunteer work, and I will be a fair and impartial judge who decides cases in accordance with Georgia law, the Georgia Constitution, and the Constitution of the United States of America."

Meanwhile, longtime District 1 School Board member Gloria Wicker was the only candidate to qualify in her district, while longtime District 5 School Board member Wes Cummings was the only candidate to qualify in his district.

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