Columbus City Council will discuss Tuesday potentially filling three vacancies on the Municipal Election Commission.
Five people serve on the election commission that coordinates and certifies municipal elections.
Four-year terms for Penesha McDowell-Harrison, Diane Sloan and Roy Hicks expired on June 30.
The five candidates who applied for the three slots on the board are Lavonne Harris, Julie Parker and Jermaine Shanklin, along with McDowell and Hicks seeking reappointment.
Harris, president for the Lowndes County chapter of the NAACP, noted her experience as a poll worker in her application.
“I know that I can do a great job,” she wrote. “I have worked the polls for 20 years plus and I have worked the city and county elections. I know the job like the back of my hand. I can do all positions and duties working for city and county polls.”
Parker said in her application that she seeks the appointment because she takes election integrity seriously.
“I appreciate and respect the privilege to vote and I take that responsibility very seriously,” wrote Parker, an associate professor at Mississippi State University. “Additionally, I believe the integrity of the election process should always be the focus of those responsible to the voters on election day.”
Shankin said in his application that he wants to “ensure that all people know their voting rights.”
Hicks said her training and background gives her great pride in serving the commission and how she enjoyed “working with and being a friend of (former) Mayor Robert Smith.”
McDowell-Harrison, who served last term as the commission’s chair, said she wants to be reappointed because she wants to share her knowledge of the elections process so as to benefit the city and county.
“Since becoming involved in the elections process, I’ve been given knowledge of the elections process that I find intriguing and very interesting,” she wrote in her application filed April 23. “When I was (previously) selected into the election commission, that interest in the election process has increased. Helping the city of Columbus as well as the county elections allows us to broaden our horizons while gaining a sense of commitment to our city and county citizens.”
Two additional election commission slots, terms for which expired July 18, for four-year terms held by George Sumrall and Willie Harris, are scheduled to be discussed during the Aug. 3 council meeting. Japa Castro has applied for a chance to serve on the commission and Sumrall seeks to be reappointed.