State Senator, 2nd Senatorial District

Editor’s note: The same five questions were distributed to the candidates running for this particular office. Earlier in the fall, Weelunk solicited questions from you, our readers. Those questions are reflected here in this story. Candidates were invited to offer their answers for publication free of charge. The candidates are presented in the order of ballot position in their respective district. Numerous efforts were made via campaign websites, social media profiles and publicly available contact information and phone numbers to solicit each candidate’s participation.

FOR STATE SENATOR (2nd Senatorial District)


What prompted you to run for office/re-election?

I am currently serving as the Senator from the 2nd District. I was appointed by Gov. Justice to fill the unexpired term of Kent Leonhardt who was elected as the Agriculture Commissioner. I am running for election as I want to see West Virginia move forward. We cannot continue to operate government as we have in the past.


What do you believe to be the most important issues in your race?

Jobs, infrastructure, education and a drug-free workforce

If elected, how will you improve the economy of the Northern Panhandle?

We have the greatest opportunity to grow the economy in the Northern Panhandle that I have seen in my lifetime. The natural gas industry and the downstream development that can come from the industry gives us great opportunities to create permanent jobs here in the Ohio Valley. We need to improve the infrastructure to allow for growth of population and industry in our area. The passage of the road bond will give us some of the needed funded for infrastructure projects. We need to be proactive to attract industry to our area instead of exporting our resources to other areas.

What is the most important message you hope to get across to the voters?

My main objective is to promote growth in West Virginia. I do not look for personal gain from serving as a state senator. If we work together, we can move West Virginia forward to prosperity for all.

How will you work to move West Virginia forward?

By promoting responsible government. Look to the future and do not live in the past; we must be proactive, not reactive to change.

Subscribe to Weelunk


What prompted you to run for office/ reelection?

I’m a candidate due to the fact our citizens’ voices aren’t being heard. This is my first time to run for public office, and I’m running with the thought of giving a voice to our citizens. The majority party is catering to big oil, big gas, big energy, big pharma and so on. While the big corporations fill their bank accounts and enjoy huge tax cuts, the ordinary citizen is paying the price with low wages, out of control health care costs, terrible roads, unsafe drinking water and no representation. I purposely failed to mention the opioid crisis. It is time to put someone like me in office rather than continue with people who are interested in corporations over people.


What do you believe to be the most important issues in your race?

Education, jobs and health care.

If elected, how will you improve the economy of the Northern Panhandle?

When education is enhanced, more businesses will have a positive perspective of our area and consider moving their business here. That should mean more jobs. More jobs mean more revenue for local businesses. More revenue for local businesses means more job opportunities for local workers.

What is the most important message you hope to get across to the voters?

The most important message is that when registered voters stay home and don’t vote we end up in the mess we are in. When they stay home and don’t vote, our Legislators pay attention to big corporations and forget about us and neglect us. The Legislators fail to respect us because they see us as a non-threat to their position.

How will you work to move West Virginia forward?

Well, call me pompous if you like but electing me is the first step in moving West Virginia forward. Putting the emphasis in the proper arena, proper arena meaning our citizens, is the next step in moving West Virginia forward. Enhancing our education system is critically important to moving West Virginia forward. Securing jobs for West Virginia’s citizens when out-of-state businesses relocate here is paramount. When our people are working our state is moving forward. Using our trained, certified and skilled craft people will provide top-of-the-line results for our state’s businesses. Addressing the health care issue and making health care available for senior citizens and underprivileged children is a step in moving our state forward. Seriously addressing the opioid crisis will move our state forward.