As qualifying for upcoming elections begins Monday, two incumbent Bulloch County commissioners plan to run again, one said he will not run again and two newcomers are ready to step up and join the race.
Bulloch County Commissioner Robert Rushing, Seat 2D, won’t run again, but his nephew Timmy Rushing hopes to win the race for his vacated position. Incumbents Anthony Simmons, Seat 1B, and Walter Gibson, Seat 2B, each announced Friday they intend to run for another term. Sid Jones said he plans to challenge Gibson for that seat.
“I’m excited, energetic and committed about the opportunity to continue to serve the citizens of Bulloch County,” Gibson said. The retired educator has served over 15 years as commissioner, is a member of several government committees representing Bulloch County, and is a member of the Rotary Club of Statesboro. He is a member of Pittman Park Methodist Church, a past president of Methodist Men and is a past chairman of the church trustee board.
Married to wife Dale Gibson, the couple have two adult children and a grandson.
Gibson said he is interested in continuing working for county residents regarding fire improvements, economic development, Transportation Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (TSPLOST), solid waste, intergovernmental relationships and road improvements.
Newcomer Sid Jones will qualify to challenge Gibson. The former United States Marshal Service employee (21 years) was a Bulloch County Sheriff’s deputy for eight years before that, and is now retired.
Raised in Bulloch County, the former Marine hopes to win the seat so he can work on helping balance Bulloch County’s continued growth with “quality of life.”
The Southeast Bulloch High School graduate holds a criminal justice degree from Georgia Southern University.
“I have been attending (Bulloch County Commission) meetings for two years to see how things are handled,” he said. “I think I have something to contribute.” He and wife Beatrice have been married 29 years, and have one adult son and one grandson.
Simmons has been serving on the commission for 22 years. He said he wants to run again because he enjoys helping Bulloch County residents and isn’t “done yet.”
Simmons works as a case manager for a home health agency. He is a 1974 Statesboro High School graduate, with a bachelor’s degree from Ft. Valley State University and a master’s degree in child and youth administration from Nova College in Florida.
“I have enjoyed the years of service to Bulloch County and that is why I wish to run for another term to continue my service to the people of Bulloch County.”
He is married to Joyce Marilyn Simmons, and they have two adult children and two grandchildren.
Simmons hopes to continue working on county issues such as road improvements, fire service upgrades, economic development, the Transportation Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (TSPLOST), and solid waste challenges.
Newcomer Timmy Rushing has wanted to run for a commission seat for some time, but he and his uncle Robert Rushing “didn’t feel it was right” for him to run while Robert Rushing held a commission seat.
He has learned a great deal from his uncle about county matters and is eager to join others in improving Bulloch County. Public safety, solid waste and road improvements would be top on his list to address, he said.
Married to wife Julie since 1990, Timmy Rushing has three adult children. He graduated from Statesboro High School and from Swainsboro Technical College with a degree in mechanical tool and die. The self-employed business owner (tree stump removal, rental property, construction) also farms. He is a member of Register Baptist Church.
Robert Rushing said he feels his nephew will be a great commissioner. However, having served 12 years as county commissioner, 12 years on the Bulloch County Board of Education, and eight years on the Register Town Council, as well as being Bulloch County’s first rural fire chief many years ago, he said it is time to do something different.
“It has been a pleasure, but it is time to move on and turn it over to somebody else,” he said.
Qualifying for upcoming primary May 22 elections begins Monday, March 5 at 9 a.m. and ends Friday, March 9 at noon.
Herald reporter Holli Deal Saxon may be reached at (912) 489-9414.