A Muscogee County School Board candidate has ended his campaign two weeks after it started.
David Merlin Wright, who had filed on Jan. 24 a Declaration of Intent to accept campaign contributions to win the board’s District 8 seat, filed on Thursday a Campaign Contribution Disclosure Final Report and Termination Statement.
Wright retired from the Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office as a captain and is a former Stowers Elementary School substitute teacher and aide.
Qualifying for the 2018 local nonpartisan races runs from 9 a.m. March 5 until noon March 9. The deadline to register to vote in those elections is April 23. Advance in-person voting will be April 30 through May 18 in the City Services Center, 3111 Citizens Way. May 22 will be Election Day for those races.
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Jeanette James, the qualifying and filing officer in the Muscogee County Elections and Registration Office, told the Ledger-Enquirer in an email Thursday, “Mr. Wright came to the office to submit his financial campaign information but informed me instead he wanted to withdraw his name from the running. I then gave him the attached paperwork to submit – the Affidavit Not to Exceed $2,500 and the Final Report Termination Statement. He completed these and submitted them which takes him out of the running. He states he has not received any money since submitting his DOI on January 24, 2018.”
Also via email Thursday, Wright told the Ledger-Enquirer, “I canceled my campaign for personal reasons. I have several things I need to accomplish before running for office.”
His departure leaves Philip Schley as the only announced District 8 candidate. He is a retired urologist and served on the board for 21 years (1972-81 and 1998-2010), including as chairman for nine years.
District 8 representative Frank Myers announced last month that he won’t seek re-election. In a joint announcement Jan. 23 at the All On Georgia website, District 2 representative John Thomas wrote that he was speaking for Myers when he said they won’t run for a second four-year term. Myers, a self-employed lawyer, and Thomas, an IRS agent, have been the nine-member board’s most outspoken critics of the Muscogee County School District administration.
The other seats up for election this year on the nine-member board are: the at-large seat, held by chairwoman Kia Chambers, a former teacher and now the qualifying broker for Prestige Property Brokers; the District 6 seat, held by vice chairman Mark Cantrell, CEO of Action Buildings; and the District 4 seat, held by Naomi Buckner, a special-education teacher in Chattahoochee County. The Ledger-Enquirer has reported that Chambers, Cantrell and Buckner will seek re-election.
The other candidates for the board this year, previously reported by the Ledger-Enquirer, are:
▪ Robert Mathias Roth in District 6. He is a retired U.S. Army colonel and now works from his home as director of government business development for Vertex Solutions, a learning development and services company based out of Urbana, Ill.