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Newton County had 26 candidates qualify for local county and school board offices, with a few seats seeing significant competition, while other longtime officials have been assured another term.
The race to fill the soon-to-be-vacated District 5 race will have six candidates, four Republicans, including former commissioner Ronnie Dimsdale who had not announced previously, and two Democrats.
Both the county chairman and sheriff races will have three contenders a piece, while the clerk of courts, probate judge and tax commissioner won't face any opposition this year.
Eddie Johnson, the District 2 board of education member, nearly ran unopposed as well, but longtime board of education member Rickie Corley qualified just before the deadline Friday. Johnson defeated Corley in 2008, after Corley had held the seat for 12 years.
The local Democratic and Republican chairs both felt their parties put forth good candidates this year.
"We're very confident. We have a lot of candidates in the office themselves, who bring years or experience and years of being active in their community," Democratic Chair Sarah Todd said. "A lot of them are from here originally and know what Covington needs going forward."
Republican Chair Delia Fleming said her party is committed to helping candidates financially and on the campaign trail.
"All of our candidates are top of the line. I couldn't pick out which could do better than the other. Especially in District 5, it's a jam packed race. We have a good cross section of candidates in District 5," Fleming said. "We have a good mixture of candidates, old and new. I think it shows we're not closed to newcomers."
Neither District Attorney Layla Zon nor the majority of local Superior Court judges will face competition, which the exception of Chief Judge John Ott, who is being challenged by attorney Stephanie Lindsey.
On the state level, incumbent Democratic Rep. Pam Dickerson, D-Conyers, will face competition in her newly redrawn 113th District by Conyers resident Toney Collins and Covington resident Sharon Sawyer. Collins formerly held the seat, losing to Dickerson in the 2010 primary, while Sawyer is running for office again after an unsuccessful bid for the Newton County Board of Education in 2010.
District 109 Rep. Steve Davis, R-McDonough, will face fellow McDonough Republican Dale Rutledge in the primary, while State Sen. Rick Jeffares, R-Locust Grove, will be challenged by Democrat Nelva Lee for the District 17 seat in the November election.
State Sen. Ronald Ramsey, D-Decatur, state Rep. Andy Welch, R-McDonough, and Rep. Doug Holt, R-Social Circle, will not face competition.


Kathy Morgan
Marcus Jordan

Board of Commissioners, District 3
Nancy Schulz
Tony Flanagan

Board of Commissioners, District 5
Marcello Banes
Philip Johnson

Ezell Brown

Robert Bradley

Probate Judge
Henry Baker

Board of Education, District 2
Eddie Johnson

Board of Education, District 4
Almond Turner
Franklin Perry

No candidate fielded for District 1 Board of Commissioners, Clerk of Courts or Tax Commissioner.


Keith Ellis

BOC, District 1
John Douglas
John L. Strauss

BOC, District 3
R. Kevin Wade

BOC, District 5
Ronnie Dimsdale
Wesley Dowdy
Levie A. Maddox
Jared Rutberg

Phillip Bradford
Bill Waterson

Tommy Davis

Clerk of Courts
Linda D. Hays

Tax Commissioner
Barbara Dingler

Board of Education, District 2
Ricky Corley

No candidate fielded for Probate Judge or the District 4 Board of Education seats.

Superior Court Judge, Alcovy Circuit (all seats are non-partisan)

Seat 1
Eugene M. Benton (Incumbent)
No Address Available
Age: 55
Occupation: Judge
Date Qualified: Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Seat 2
Horace J. Johnson, Jr. (Incumbent)
P.O. Box 2250
Covington, GA 30015
Age: 53
Occupation: Judge of Superior Court
Date Qualified: Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Seat 3
Stephanie R. Lindsey
No Address Available
Age: 40
Occupation: Attorney
Date Qualified: Wednesday, May 23, 2012

John M. Ott (Incumbent)
No Address Available
Age: 57
Occupation: Superior Court Judge
Date Qualified: Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Seat 4
Samuel Dwight Ozburn (Incumbent)
No Address Available
Age: 60
Occupation: Judge, Superior Court
Date Qualified: Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Seat 5
Ken Wynne (Incumbent)
P.O. Box 1475
Oxford, GA 30054
Age: 49
Occupation: Judge
Date Qualified: Wednesday, May 23, 2012

District Attorney, Alcovy Circuit
Layla H. Zon (Incumbent), Republican
P.O. Box 2266
Covington, GA 30015
Age: 39
Occupation: District Attorney
Date Qualified: Thursday, May 24, 2012