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To learn about the candidates, the sections below contain information that candidates have provided.
Click on their names for link to their web sites.  


*Denotes Incumbent


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Chuck Van Velkinburgh announced his candidacy for Justice of the Peace District 1 in Marion County.

Velkinburgh states, “My wife, Diane and I have been involved in the area since 1979. In the Fall 2015 we purchased property and built our home where we now live. In the Fall of 2022 we started attending the Quorum Court meetings in Yellville after hearing of several break-ins in our area to see what could be done to help strenghten the law enforcement effort in our area.

I became very interested in how the Ouorum Court works and what I could do to help. I realize the major responsibilities are to work towards keeping Marion County financially solvent and keeping the citizens safe.

I’m pro law enforcement and believe that a safe community is a strong community. If elected, I will look forward to working for the people of Lazy Acres, Oakland, Peel, Pine Mountain, Price Place, Promise Land and any other adjoining territory on ways to keep not only our JP area #1 safe and sound but also working towards keeping the entire Marion County a growing and prosperous county.”

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Sandra Lee announces her candidacy for Marion County Justo of the Peace District 2. She is a part of the Marion County Republican Party.

Originally born and raised in Wisconsin, she grew up on a small family farm where she learned dedication and discipline at an early age. Over the last 25 years and three

states, she has owned and operated three separate businesses, learning the importance of transparency and honesty within her daily life.

 Throughout her life, she has always prioritized giving back to the community, spending time volunteering with local human societies, park clean-ups, Angel Tree and rescue blanket ministries along with other service and boards within her church.

Lee and her family have been vacationing in Bull Shoals since 1995 and put down permanent roots in 2019 with her husband of 29 years, Mark, to be closer to family. She

currently works for Bull Shoals Family Dental and is an active member and current treasurer of Bull Shoals Methodist Church.

Mark is a Deputy Sheriff for the Marion County Sheriff’s Department, and they have one daughter, Alexis, and a rescued dog named Buddy.

 Sandra has an open mind, eagerness to learn and wants to help make a positive change and impact on Marion County by being the voice of the citizens of Bull Shoals.




am announcing my intent to run for Marion County Justice of the Peace, Pct #3. I feel that my 30 years of public service will help me to serve the Citizens of Marion County.  I began my Law Enforcement career at the age of 19 with Campus Security while in college. I have worked as a Jailer, Bailiff, Patrol Officer, Criminal Investigator, Corrections Officer, and currently Police Chief of the City of Cotter.  I have worked in City, County, and State Agencies, and have worked hard to serve the community with the utmost integrity and professionalism.

My Wife and I have raised our two daughters in Marion County, and I have a deep love for this place. I feel that it is time I gave back to our hard-working Community. As your Justice of the Peace, I will strive to continue making Marion County a place to be proud of.  I bring a unique set of skills having worked for municipal, county, and state government and possess a Bachelor of Science Degree in Political Science from the University of Texas at Tyler.

As the current Police Chief for the City of Cotter I have an integral knowledge of the Budget process and how to work with people to obtain common goals. I feel that this position is truly an extension of the voters and citizens of Marion County, and as your JP I will work hard to create an atmosphere where compromise is welcomed. I am a Conservative Republican who believes in God, strongly defends the Constitution, and loves his family and community. I will work hard to bridge gaps and create a more productive and sound government so that citizens can be proud to live and work in Marion County.

Thank you and God Bless,

Travis Hopson

Kolton Jensen Justice of the Peace District 4.jpeg



My name is Kolton Jensen and I am very pleased to be your Justice of the Peace for Marion County District 4. 

As a lifelong resident of Marion County, I will strive to maintain the values I was raised upon. I am a Christian, husband to my wife of 9 years, and father of two beautiful boys. I am the proud owner of Woods Wrecker Service 2, providing towing/recovery services to citizens of the county. 

As your Justice of the Peace, I will work hard for the citizens of Marion County. I, just like you, I am a dedicated individual who understands the values and morals needed to make our county successful and prosper for generations to come. The success of our schools, law enforcement, road department, citizens, and county entities are my utmost priority, and I look forward to representing District 4.

Dr John Reed - candidate JP 5.jpeg





Manager of Information Technology 

Long time Marion County residence

Lifetime conservative ideology

Common sense problem solving

Law enforcement background



Doctorate degree in Management

Conservative with a focus in fiscal analysis

Viet Nam Veteran

Christian ethics

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Leslie Kerwood, Republican, is officially announcing her candidacy for the position of Justice of the Peace, District 6.

A Marion County native, Kerwood is a graduate of Yellville-Summit Class of 2000.  She has a master’s degree in psychology and a bachelor’s degree in business management.  Leslie is currently employed by Summit Community Care, an Arkansas Medicaid Passe program.  PASSE is a program that serves Medicaid clients with complex behavioral health, developmental, or intellectual disabilities.  She is a current member of the Board of Directors for Marion County Community Services.  Leslie and her husband Mike, live on a small farm and raise cattle.  These are experiences she will use as a Justice of the Peace.

“I am a lifetime resident myself and love my community and way of life”, stated Kerwood.  Her work on the Board of Directors for Marion County Community Services has given her an opportunity to work on getting a community center built for the benefit of the residents of Marion County, which she is passionate about.

Leslie Kerwood is married to Mike Kerwood and they have 6 children and 3 grandchildren.  They enjoy their country life and their time with family.

Kerwood states, “I am extremely passionate about helping the residents of Marion County to be the best version of our current selves and I would like to be your voice for Justice of the Peace, District 6.”

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Rolin Hutching and his wife Ruth have lived in the Marion County Arkansas area since they relocated here 16 years ago.

Ruth and Rolin knew each other 40 years ago, but lost touch. Then they surprisingly found one another again on Facebook.

They are very happy living in their home in the Yellville area.

Rolin was the Deputy Coroner in Marion County for about 5 years and then was on the Election Commission for 2 years during the 2020 Presidential election. It was after this election that Rolin decided to run for Justice of the Peace in District 6.
He has enjoyed his service on the Quorum Court and feels he has served his constituents well during his first term and is seeking re-election. 

When issues arise on the Court, he makes it his personal duty to visit the department involved to see firsthand how that issue may affect Marion County. 

He has personally visited with every department including the 911 office, Jail, Sheriff, Transfer Station, Treasurer, County Judge and the Assessor’s offices.  His goal is to bring more money to Marion County without raising taxes to increase the working budget of Marion County. Rolin is a member of the Marion County Republican Committee and is active in community events for the organization.

Rolin Hutching respectfully requests that he be allowed to continue as the District 6 JP and asks for your vote. 



Marion Wesley Shipman, is seeking re-election for Justice of the Peace, District 7.  Shipmen is semi-retired from a family business, Shipman Pump Service in Yellville.  He has strong family ties to Marion County. 


Shipman believes his business experience and working knowledge of the county helps him make good fiscally sound decisions to ensure that Marion County is run effectively for the citizens of Marion County.


Shipman has served as JP 7 for past 29 years and would like the honor of continuing to represent the constituents in Justice of the Peace, District 7. 



Hello, Marion County! My name is Phyllis Graham, and I am a Republican seeking your vote for Marion County JP District 7. I have lived in Rea Valley for 8 years after moving here from Blytheville, and I love where I live. I’ve been happily married to my husband Rick for 42 wonderful years. We have two grown children and one grandchild we adore. I am a born-again Christian, and I currently serve as Secretary/Treasurer for the First Baptist Church of Cotter. Running for office is not something I take lightly. After much prayer and thoughtful consideration, I chose to seek office because I believe fresh ideas and a passionate JP could go a long way in making our community an even greater place to call home.

For 30 years, I dealt with accounting and budgeting for both Chase Bank and Beal Bank in Dallas. My wealth of financial experience in multiple aspects of my career make me a very qualified candidate to represent you, my friends and neighbors, on the Marion County Quorum Court. I believe in fiscal responsibility and that every level of government is accountable to the taxpayers. I believe in a limited role of government so that we are free to exercise our rights openly and without fear of reprisal. If you place your trust in me by giving me your vote, I give you my word that I will work tirelessly to ensure that I live up to the responsibility you place in me by making decisions that will benefit all of Marion County. I humbly ask for your vote on March 5, 2023.

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My name is Tommy Dorsey, and I am running for Justice of the Peace District #8.
I moved from Fayetteville to Yellville in 2003. 
I have w
orked for the same Financial Institution for 24 years.
I currently serve as the City of Yellville Representative on the Marion County Equalization Board, as well as the City of Yellville Park Board and Planning and Zoning Board.
I am community oriented and want to see Marion County prosper.
I believe if we all work together, we can achieve this. 
I would appreciate your support. 


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Announcement was made of the filing of a Marion County resident for the JP District 9 seat. Tommy Dean Johnson of the Bruno area will be running for the JP seat that was held by Joyce McCalla. Johnson is a native born of Arkansas and a lifelong resident of Marion County and District 9.

 “I’ve worked the land here, so I have a relationship with the people who make their home in this district’ he said. Johnson brings to the seat a lifelong knowledge of local agriculture and livestock production. He has also worked the construction field from basic building to heavy equipment. 


A 1972 graduate of Yellville-Summit High School, Johnson has worked various jobs from industrial down rigging to a time on an offshore drilling platform in the Gulf of Mexico. In 1989, he enlisted in the US Army Reserve training as a Combat Engineer from construction phase to mechanized armor.

‘I never worked on financial budgets in government but that all changed on my last deployment in 2008’. I was reassigned to the 2145th Garrison Support Unit stationed in Nashville, TN where I deployed with them on my 2nd tour to the Victory Base Complex (VBC) in Baghdad, Iraq. My assignment was coordinating the military contracts of the civilian contractors to ensure the budget proposals met the standards issued by the military. Holding the rank of SFC E7, he was later assigned to be the Sr. NCO of Infrastructure Operations for the entire base, the largest in the Iraqi Theater of the conflict. ‘I had a broken system and was instructed to make it work better. I looked at what worked and what wasn’t working and with the help of the officers over me, we made it work’.

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Chris Carter announces his candidacy for Marion County Justice of the Peace, District 9 in the Republican Primary. This is the area that had been represented by Justice Joyce McCalla until her untimely passing in September. Carter states that he brings a wide range of experience to his candidacy for the position of Justice of the Peace, District 9.


Carter has been an active member of the Marion County Republican Committee since 1988.  He has worked with various legislators over the years regarding the needs of Marion County.  His experience in his own private legal practice, managing offices and staff at the county and state level as well in addition to his service on various boards makes him a great candidate to be Justice of the Peace, District 9.


In addition to his years serving in a legal capacity in his private practice, Carter has served as Public Defender, Prosecutor, District Judge, and Circuit Judge. Carter has been involved with county activities which have included the Marion County Bar Association, County’s Planning Board; Election Commission; and Courthouse Security Committee.  His community activities include Treasurer and Board Member of the South Shore Soccer Association, President of the North Central Arkansas Coin Club, member of St. Andrew’s Pastoral Council, and chaperone for youth activities. Carter states, “My life experiences and the tough decisions I have had to make that affect the lives of people together with involvement with organizations and community has provided me with a wealth of knowledge in handling personnel and budgetary matters. These attributes are key to handling budgets for the county.”


Born in Alaska to a Navy family, Carter always had a close relationship with his father’s family in the Ozarks. Familiarity with Ozark people and values led him to choose Arkansas to be his home and he has resided in Marion County for the past 35 years. Carter lives in Yellville with his wife, Karen (Garrett) Carter. Chris and Karen have served as foster parents.  They have three children and three grandchildren.  His wife of 34 years, Karen, is a member of The CALL (Children of Arkansas Loved for a Lifetime) which is a non-profit organization that mobilizes local churches to serve local children and youth placed in foster care




Jason Nazarenko, A republican, has announced his candidacy for District 4 state representative.  This seat is currently held by Jack Fortner, who has announced that he is not seeking re-election and is supporting Jason in his Campaign.

“I am passionate about serving our district and the citizens within it to make positive impacts where needed and to ensure their voice is heard on the capital floor.”  “I will focus on positive growth, while maintaining a push for lower taxes and less government.” 

Nazarenko said.  “ I am anxious to serve the citizens of our district.”

Nazarenko is a 1994 Cotter graduate who left the area in 1996 to join the US Army serving over 23 years on Active duty with the last ten years flying Blackhawk helicopters for the Army’s elite 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment more commonly known as the Night Stalkers.   Nazarenko currently flies for Air Evac LifeTeam in Harrison, as well as being an on-call pilot for the Baxter County Sheriff’s Office and Reserve Deputy.  Nazarenko holds a Bachelor’s degree in Professional Aeronautics from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, and a double Masters in Business Administration and Philosophy of Management. 

Nazarenko is a long standing member of Twin Lakes Baptist church in Mountain Home and will rely on his strong conservative beliefs as he represents District 4 in the capital.

“ Representative Fortner has done an excellent job of representing our community in Little Rock with his strong Conservative, Christian beliefs and voting record.  I am anxious to continue to serve District 4 in a way that makes your voice heard clearly.”

Nazarenko currently volunteers as the president for the Cotter-Gassville Chamber of Commerce and is the commissioner for the Planning and Zoning boards in Cotter.

Nazarenko and his wife of 27 years, Kammi (Statler – of Lakeview) reside in Cotter where they have focused their attention on updating many of the buildings, providing homes and jobs in the process.

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Rhonda “Tink” Albright, a strong conservative leader, is a current member of the Baxter County Quorum Court, where she has served as Justice of the Peace for 9 years. She is also a member of the Baxter County Republican Committee, advocate with North Central Conservatives, past treasurer for Twin Lakes Republican Women, volunteer at the Mountain Home Christian Clinic, and past president of Business and Professional Women.


Albright is committed to standing for the conservative values that represent the place she calls home. As a state representative, Albright wants to be an advocate for first responders and law enforcement, as well as a fighter for lower taxes, and less government.

She also wants to see more resources in place in her community and across the state for mental health issues and drug addiction.

“As a lifelong resident of this area, I believe I have what it takes to represent the citizens the way they deserve. I want to be an advocate for first responders, a champion for lower taxes, and a defender for mental health and drug addiction resources. Most of all, however, I want to be a voice of reason in Little Rock for the citizens of House District 4. I am beyond excited to represent all of you and I hope I can count on your support.”

Albright is a native of Baxter County, the daughter of the late Ron and LaDella Albright, with deep family roots in the Twin Lakes area. She has several years of experience in air medical operations, 911 operations and emergency planning. Being a former Program Director and consultant for Air Evac Lifeteam, 911 Coordinator for Baxter County, and working membership and business development for SurvivalFlight, Albright knows what it means to work closely with law enforcement, fire departments, and EMS. Albright has been running her family’s cattle farm in Whiteville since 2017 where she lives with her husband, Richard Taffner, an epidemiologist. They have two grown children and one granddaughter.

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Senator Scott Flippo represents District 23, which includes Baxter and Marion Counties and parts of Boone, Fulton and Izard Counties. He was elected to the Senate in 2014 and took the oath of office on the first day of the 2015 regular session.

Senator Flippo is chair of the Senate City, County and Local Affairs Committee, co-chair of the Review Subcommittee and vice co-chair of the Joint Energy Committee. He is a member of the Senate Public Health, Welfare and Labor Committee, the Joint Performance Review (JPR) Committee, the Senate Rules, Resolutions and Memorials Committee, the Joint Budget Committee, the Arkansas Legislative Council, the Legislative Joint Auditing Committee, the Game and Fish / State Police Subcommittee, the Higher Education Subcommittee, the Performance Evaluation and Expenditure Review (PEER) Subcommittee and the Policy-Making Subcommittee.

In past sessions Senator Flippo has served as the Senate co-chair of the Legislative Council’s Review Subcommittee and the Behavioral Health Treatment Access Legislative Task Force. He has served as vice chair for the Council’s Hospital and Medicaid Study Subcommittee and vice chair of the Joint Energy Committee. He was the Senate Majority Whip for the 92nd General Assembly and served as the Senate Majority Leader for the 93rd General Assembly.

In the 2021 session Senator Flippo sponsored legislation to amend the penalties for a violation of the mandatory seat belt law, to expand the review of license applications for long-term care facilities and to amend the Medicaid eligibility verification system. He was also the Senate sponsor for House bills on chemical abortion, the use of firefighting foam and the authority of the Attorney General to legally challenge federal regulations.

In past sessions, Senator Flippo sponsored legislation to reform procurement policies of state agencies. He sponsored legislation to strengthen the General Assembly’s oversight of procurement rules and practices.

Senator Flippo is a member the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) and the Southern Legislative Conference (SLC). He is a member of the Bull Shoals Chamber of Commerce and Rotary Club and Mountain Home Chamber of Commerce and Rotary Club.

Senator Flippo is a native of Mountain Home and lives there. He is a graduate of Mountain Home High School and earned a degree in Business Administration from the University of Arkansas.

He is the owner of Carefree Living, an assisted living center. He is a member of the Methodist church.






Arkansas Secretary of State John Thurston, first elected in November 2018, was re-elected to a second term in November 2022.  Previously, he served two terms as Arkansas Commissioner of State Lands.  John is the past chair of the Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council and past president of the Western States Land Commissioners Association.


By law, the Secretary of State serves as chair of the Capitol Arts and Grounds Commission and the State Board of Election Commissioners. In his official capacity, he is also a member of the Capitol Zoning District Commission, the Capitol Parking Control Committee, and the Information Network of Arkansas Board.  In addition, the Secretary of State serves as a member of the Board of Apportionment, which oversees the redistricting of state legislative districts.


Secretary Thurston is a member of the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS).  There, he serves on the Elections, Cybersecurity, and International Relations Committees.  He also currently serves as co-chair of the Business Services Committee.


Born in Little Rock and raised in Saline County, John graduated from Sheridan High School in 1991.  He has a diploma in biblical studies from Agape College and a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.


John now resides in East End with his wife Joanna and their five children.  He is an avid outdoorsman.



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Raised in an Air Force family, U.S. Representative Rick Crawford has lived all over the United States and in England. His parents instilled in him a devotion to service from a young age. Those simple life lessons have remained with Rick, and are at the forefront of his mind when working on creating a more prosperous America for future generations.

Rick enlisted in the United States Army straight out of high school. He served as an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician, completing four years of service and advancing to the rank of Sergeant. He earned numerous medals for service at home and in Southwest Asia.

After completion of his military service, Rick matriculated at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro and graduated in 1996 with a degree in Agriculture Business and Economics.

Throughout college, Rick competed in rodeos across the country and, while recovering from a career-ending injury, discovered a talent for announcing and producing rodeos. He became a freelance rodeo announcer and producer after completing his bachelor’s degree, which led to a career in agri-news reporting and broadcasting. He founded and operated the AgWatch Network – a web-based farm news content provider serving more than 50 radio station affiliates in five states. Rick also served as marketing manager for one of the largest John Deere dealer groups in North America.


Driven by a desire to serve and help secure a brighter future for Arkansas’s First District, Rick decided to run for Congress in 2010. In his six terms in Congress, Rick has voiced the concerns of his district while bringing solutions to the national table. He is a senior member on the House Agriculture Committee, having played a critical role in passing two Farm Bills, having served on the Conference Committees in 2014 and 2018, and as Chairman of Agriculture Subcommittees in three of his first five terms in Congress. He views agriculture as a national security issue – a nation that cannot feed itself is a nation that is not secure.

National security is one of Rick’s top priorities and he was appointed in 2017 to serve on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) – the first Arkansas representative to do so.


Rick also serves on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee where he has worked to create safer and more reliable highways, waterways, railways, and runways. His most significant accomplishment on the transportation front for the First District was the interstate designation of I-555, a vital corridor for Northeast Arkansas. He is current Chairman of the Subcommittee on Highways and Transit after serving two terms as the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials.

Rick and his wife Stacy, also an A-State graduate, live in Jonesboro with their two children. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with his family, cooking, watching old western films, and playing guitar and singing with his band, Triple Nickel.





Russell N. Luder

Mollie Morgan


Jason S. Jones


*Bryan Benedict



*Jesse B. Rose

Jason Smith




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