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Stultz faces another challenger in the May 20 Republican primary: Jeff Abel, a lending officer with Wells Fargo, according to Rose Wing, Cobb GOP first vice chair.
Abel could not be reached by press time.
Thayer, 65, has two stepchildren with husband Ed Thayer. Ed Thayer is a former Cobb area assistant superintendent who now works part time as coordinator for the Lassiter High School Concert Hall.
Susan Thayer joined the Cobb School District in 1975 as an Osborne High School counselor.
She was principal of Pebblebrook High School from 1986 to 1992. In 1996, she moved from her position as Cobb’s executive director for high schools to the Douglas County School District, where she served as assistant superintendent for K-12 curriculum, retiring in 2000. After retirement, Thayer returned as director of leadership management in the Cobb School District’s human resources department, retiring in 2009.
Since then, Thayer said she’s done consulting work for former Fulton County superintendent James Wilson’s firm, Education Planners.
“The Post 2 high schools are Osborne and Campbell, and I was counselor at Osborne for eight years and at Campbell the IB program there, when I was director of high schools for Cobb, my staff and I wrote the grants and got the approval for the IB program that’s located there at Campbell, so I’ve got a vested interest in both of those schools and all their feeder schools,” she said.
Thayer described herself as a moderate Republican, saying she voted for Mitt Romney in the last Republican presidential primary.
A number of community members have encouraged her to run for office, she said.
“Three of the board members have called and talked with me about it that are on the board now,” she said. “I’ve talked with some former board members. I have talked with members of the community already, I’ve talked with (Smyrna Mayor) Max Bacon, I’ve talked with (Cobb Chamber of Commerce CEO) David Connell, so a number of people that are influential in our area that have been encouraging and supportive. I didn’t ask for endorsements or anything; they were just encouraging me to run.”
Lining up for Helen Goreham’s seat
Democrat Derrick Crump, an IT consultant who with his wife Danielle has two children attending Hillgrove High School, has signed up with the Cobb Democratic Party to run for the Post 1 seat on the Cobb Board of Commissioners. The seat is wide open with the retirement of Commissioner Helen Goreham.
Crump is Commissioner Lisa Cupid’s appointee to Keep Cobb Beautiful. District 1, which is west Cobb, is a heavily Republican area, although Melissa Pike, chairwoman of the Cobb Democratic Party, believes Crump has a chance.
“If he tries hard enough and he’s going up against Bill Byrne, possibly,” Pike said. “I think there’s a chance. I think a lot of the voters are sick of craziness. I miss having a government that works. People don’t have to like each other, they just have to eventually realize, well, let’s do something.”
Glenn Melson, 51, of Powder Springs, a partner in the Marietta-based insurance agency Corporate Risk Advisors, has also signed up to run in the Republican primary for the District 1 seat.
Melson and his wife, René, have three daughters, the youngest of whom is a junior at Harrison High School. They also have a grandson, age 3.
Melson said he voted for Herman Cain in the last Republican presidential primary.
Another Republican to sign up for the District 1 seat is Republican Angela Barner of Acworth.
Barner, 48, and her husband, Jim, an associate broker with RE/MAX, have one adult son.
Barner said she voted for Romney in the presidential primary.
Other Republican candidates in the District 1 race include former county Chairman Byrne, former Acworth Alderman Bob Weatherford and retired Marietta Assistant Fire Chief Scott Tucker.
Cobb Solicitor General Barry Morgan also has a challenger. Republican Cindi Yeager of Marietta, who lost to Vic Reynolds in the 2012 primary for Cobb district attorney, has qualified for Cobb solicitor general.
Signing up at the State House
Down at the state Capitol, state Rep. Sam Teasley (R-Marietta) has picked up a challenger in the form of Democrat Bill Bolton of Marietta. Bolton has previously run for mayor, governor and president of the United States.
There are four candidates vying for the seat held by state Rep. Alisha Thomas Morgan (D-Austell). Morgan qualified for state school superintendent on Thursday. The three Democrats are business owner C. Branson Wright of Mableton, Erica Thomas of Austell, executive director of Speak Out Loud, and Monica Delancy of Austell, who lost to Cupid in the 2012 race for a seat on the Cobb Board of Commissioners. The fourth candidate, Mary Ward Cater, a court bailiff and insurance agent, is running as an independent.
“My priority for that seat is somebody that’s going to take on the blight in Austell,” Pike said. “We’ve got to get Austell back into this century. It’s so sad to drive through there and you feel like you’re somewhere that a major plant has just shut down and there’s nobody.”