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Qualifying ended at noon, but not before a surprise candidate registered to run for the District 1 Board of Education seat as a Democrat. Just before the noon deadline, Mike Russell, a Grady County businessman and owner of Russell Outdoor Advertising, became the only Democratic candidate for that school board seat. On the Republican side, the primary election will feature city of Cairo employee Jeff Worsham and local plumber Darren Moore for the Republican nomination for the District 1 school board seat. The winner of the Republican primary will face Rusell in the general election this November. In the District 3 Board of Education race, Cairo banker Marty Cannington was the lone Democrat to qualify and local barber Allen Jenkins was the only Republican candidate to qualify for the District 3 post. Cannington and Jenkins will face off in the general election in November. Grady County Board of Education Chairman Teresa Gee Harris, who represents District 4 on the school board, was the lone candidate to qualify for District 4 and she automatically earns another four year term. There will not be any county commission races this year. District 1 Commissioner Elwyn Childs and District 3 Commissioner Charles Norton, who both qualified for the first time as Republicans, were the only candidates to qualify. Lafaye Copeland, a Democrat and the lone candidate to qualify for the District 4 seat being vacated by Commissioner Al Ball, automatically earns a four year term beginning January 1, 2013. In the July 31 primary, Grady County Sheriff Harry Young will battle Democratic challengers Jerome Smiley and Odell Jolly. The Democratic nominee will then face Republican Earl Stuckey, who qualified as a Republican for a third run as sheriff. Probate Court Clerk Denise Maddox and city of Cairo communications director Celeste Tyler will face off in the non-partisan election July 31 for the Grady County Probate judgeship. Grady County Tax Commissioner Phyllis Gainous, Clerk of Court Debbie Kines, and Chief Magistrate Larry Bearden are all unopposed and will serve another four-year term. Democratic candidate Rusty Powe was the lone candidate to qualify for coroner so he will succeed Coroner Nancy Clark, who is not seeking re-election, on January 1, 2013.

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