Meet the Runoff Candidates | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Meet the Runoff Candidates

(Left to right) Bill Waller Jr., Tate Reeves, Andy Taggart and Lynn Fitch Photos by Ashton Pittman

(Left to right) Bill Waller Jr., Tate Reeves, Andy Taggart and Lynn Fitch Photos by Ashton Pittman

On Aug. 27, these candidates will compete in the 2019 party primary runoffs. Learn about each candidate for statewide office and in Jackson metro-area legislative races.


Republican Primary Runoff


Tate Reeves Photo by Ashton Pittman

Tate Reeves

"Keep Mississippi Strong." (campaign slogan)

Age: 45

Hometown: Florence, Miss.

Occupation: Current Mississippi Lieutenant Governor



Bill Waller Photo by Ashton Pittman

Bill Waller Jr.

"Make Mississippi Roads Great Again." (campaign slogan)

Age: 67

Hometown: Jackson

Occupation: Former Mississippi Supreme Court Chief Justice


Attorney General

Republican Primary Runoff


Lynn Fitch Photo by Imani Khayyam

Lynn Fitch

"A solution-driven conservative with a unique skill set in law, finance, administration, and policy" (campaign website)

Age: 57

Hometown: Ridgeland, Miss.

Occupation: Current Mississippi Treasurer



Andy Taggart Photo by Ashton Pittman

Andy Taggart

"We must have better ... in the fight against the scourge of drugs." (Twitter)

Age: 62

Hometown: Madison

Occupation: Lawyer



Public Service Commissioner

Central District Democratic Primary Runoff


De’Keither Stamps Photo by Ashton Pittman

De'Keither Stamps (D)

"Affordable rates, reliable services, accessible utilities."

Age: 42

Occupation: Jackson councilman; President of National Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials




Dorothy Benford Photo by Lizzie Wright

Dorothy Benford (D)

"To reassure the citizens that ... officials are competent 
and capable ..."

Age: 76

Occupation: Frequent candidate for various offices

Jackson Metro-Area Legislative Races

Mississippi Senate District 22

Democratic Primary Runoff


Photo courtesy Ruffin Smith Facebook

Ruffin Smith

"Building roads and bridges for our future." (campaign slogan)

Age: 38

Hometown: Louise, Miss.

Occupation: Mayor of Louise; businessman; farmer



Photo courtesy Joseph C. Thomas Facebook

Joseph C. Thomas

"Experienced champion for schools." (campaign slogan)

Age: 70

Hometown: Yazoo City, Miss.

Occupation: Former Mississippi Senator for District 21; former Vice President at Regions Bank

Mississippi House District 63

Democratic Primary Runoff


Photo courtesy Deborah Dixon Facebook

Deborah Dixon (Incumbent)

"Great education for all students; Higher pay for all state employees; Roads and bridges." (Facebook)

Age: 58

Hometown: Jackson

Occupation: Incumbent House Representative


Photo courtesy Stephanie McKenzie Foster Facebook

Stephanie McKenzie Foster

"Stronger Families; Stronger Communities; Stronger Schools; Stronger Law Enforcement." (Facebook)

Age: 52

Hometown: Jackson

Occupation: Deputy clerk at Hinds County Chancery Office


Mississippi House District 70

Democratic Primary Runoff


Photo courtesy William "Bo" Brown Facebook

William "Bo" Brown

"Promote economic development, improve infrastructure and support advanced education initiatives." (campaign website)

Age: 73

Hometown: Jackson

Occupation: Insurance specialist; former Jackson Councilman



Photo courtesy Kathy Sykes Facebook

Kathy Sykes (Incumbent) (D)

"Finding common ground for the common good." (campaign website)

Age: 56

Hometown: Jackson

Occupation: Incumbent District 70 House Representative; consultant



Hinds County Races



Victor Mason Photo by Imani Khayyam

Victor Mason (Incumbent) (D)

"I will administer the Hinds County jails professionally so they are once again safe and secure." (Facebook)

Age: 63

Occupation: Hinds County Sheriff, former law enforcement: JPD, Sheriff's Office, FBI, State of Mississippi



Lee Vance Photo by Imani Khayyam

Lee Vance (D)

"Lee Vance knows the value of being connected. That's why he's running for this position. Help him help you." (campaign website)

Age: 61

Occupation: 30 years in Jackson Police Department, including police chief under Mayors Yarber, Lumumba


Hinds Supervisor District 2 


Photo courtesy David Archie

David Archie (D)

"A Man That Will Take a Stand" (campaign flyer)

History: Archie has run for Hinds sheriff, Jackson mayor and faced Darrel McQuirter in a runoff for this seat four years ago.



Darrel McQuirter Photo by Imani Khayyam

Darrel McQuirter (Incumbent) (D)

"Hinds County - A Very Special Place is our slogan and our goal is to strive for continued success." (supervisor's site)

Age: 57

Occupation: Hinds supervisor since 2014; McQuirter Realty and Construction


Supervisor's page:

Hinds Supervisor District 3

Silas Bolden Jr. (D)

"I'm gonna push to build a new jail in Jackson." (WAPT)

Occupation: Reverend, White Rock M.B. Church

No public campaign pages


Credell Calhoun Photo courtesy Mississippi House of Representatives

Credell Calhoun (D)

Age: 76

Occupation: Mississippi House, 68th District since 2003, and has proposed multiple bills requiring public schools to include recitation of "10 Commandments"; businessman including construction and development; running for long-time Supervisor Peggy Hobson Calhoun's seat, which his wife has held since 1992

No public campaign pages

Legislative page:

Hinds Supervisor, 
District 5


Photo courtesy Patty Patterson Campaign

Patty Patterson (D)

"It's your money." (campaign flyer)

Age: 56

Occupation: Businesswoman and owner, Repurposed Projects, in west Jackson




Photo courtesy Bobby McGowan Campaign

Bobby "Bobcat" McGowan (Incumbent) (D)

"My promise to you, the citizens of Hinds County District Five, is to remodel District Five." (Facebook)

Age: 56

Occupation: Hinds County Public Works Department road crew for 30 years, moving up to supervisor. Hinds supervisor since 2016. Owner, B&R Chartering Services


Supervisor's page:

Justice Court Judge, District 2


Photo courtesy Tabitha Britton-Porter Campaign

Tabitha Britton-Porter (Incumbent) (D)

"Fair, Experienced, Compassionate" (campaign)

Occupation: Incumbent Justice Court Judge, District 2



Photo courtesy Eddie Robinson Campaign

Eddie Robinson (D)

"Integrity, Honesty, Commitment"

Age: 43

Occupation: 30 years law enforcement: Jackson Airport police officer, Hinds County deputy, Hinds County DA's chief investigator


Voting Information

The Aug. 27 statewide, local and district-level primary runoffs are open to anyone who registered to vote at least 30 days in advance, even if they did not vote in the Aug. 6 primaries. However, if people voted in one party's primary in the Aug. 6 election, they cannot switch parties and vote in the other runoff.

"If you voted in the Republican primary, you cannot vote in the Democratic (runoff) primary in three weeks and vice versa," Hinds County Republican Party Chairman Pete Perry told the Jackson Free Press on Aug. 7. "If you did not vote, you can vote in whatever primary."

After voters decide, party nominees will face off against one another in the Nov. 5 general election.

Voters must show an accepted form of photo ID at the voting booth, a list of which is available on the secretary of state's website. County circuit clerks across the state offer all residents free photo IDs that they can use to vote. For more information on voting and voter ID, go to


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