Challengers sparse as election qualifying begins

Qualifying for the 2010 Shelby County elections has begun and it appears the ballot will be full of Republican incumbents, while short on Democratic challengers.

Four judicial seats are up for grabs, including Circuit Judge Place 1, Circuit Judge Place 3, Circuit Judge Place 4 and District Judge Place 1.

Judge Hub Harrington currently holds Circuit Court Place 1, while Judge Michael Joiner holds Circuit Court Place 3 and Judge Dan Reeves holds Circuit Court Place 4. Judge Jim Kramer currently holds District Court Place 1.

Although the judges work in Shelby County, the judicial elections are actually considered state races, and qualifying for those positions does not formally begin until March 2.

Six other positions are up for grabs, including district attorney, superintendent of education, Places 1 and 2 on the Board of Education, coroner and sheriff.

Robby Owens is the current district attorney, Randy Fuller is the schools superintendent, Anne Glass and David Nichols are the place 1 and 2 school board representatives, Diana Hawkins is the coroner and Chris Curry is the sheriff.

Freddy Ard, Shelby County Republican Party chairperson, said Curry, Glass and Nichols have all qualified, and Fuller and Hawkins have announced their intentions to run for re-election.

Ard said no challengers have qualified yet, but he said he expects at least one person to run for one of the school board seats.

Shelby County Democratic Party Chairperson Carolyn Shields said there have been no Democratic qualifiers in the 10 races.

This primary election is scheduled for June 1, with the general election scheduled for Nov. 2.

The qualifying deadline is April 2.