WEBISODE SERIES: 2016 Candidate Profiles

Now Habersham is providing local voters an in-depth look at the 2016 May Primary candidates in a series of one-on-one personal interviews conducted by reporter, Dick Stafford. We hope these video stories will encourage the voters of Habersham County to better know each candidate and assist in making an informed choice in the Primary Election, May 24.

#1 – County Board of Education District 1: Don Corbett (I) and Doug Westmoreland

#2 – Chief Magistrate: Gerald Johnson (I) and Souvanh Touralack

#3 – Clerk of Superior Court: Joan Jones and David Wall (I)

#4 – County Commission District 1: Stacy Hall and Sonny James (I)

#5 – County Commission District 5: George Locke Arnold, Dale Green and Ed Nichols (I)

#6 – Probate Judge: Lorne Cragg, William Jarvis McFarlin and Pam Wooley (I)

#7 – Sheriff: Tonya Elrod, Chad Mealor and Joey Terrell (I)

#8 – State Court Judge: Steven Campbell (I) and Cadman Robb Kiker

#9 – Mountain Judicial Circuit District Attorney: George Christian (I) and Bruce Russell, Jr.

#10 – 50th District State Senate: Roy Benifield and John Wilkinson (I)

#11 – Congress 9th District: Paul Broun, Bernie Fontaine, Mike Scupin, Roger Fitzpatrick and Doug Collins (I)
EDITOR’S NOTE: Congressman Collins was unavailable to be interviewed due to scheduling conflicts.
He is the only candidate not included in Now Habersham’s Candidate Profiles series.

WEBISODE 6: Habersham County Christmas Parade

Hundreds turned out on Saturday, December 6th for the annual Habersham County Christmas Parade. This year’s theme was “A Country Christmas.” Now Habersham videographer Daniel Usher captured all of the sights and sounds and we’re happy to share them with you here now.

As you watch the parade, keep an eye out for the winners. This year’s parade float award winners are: 1st place, City of Cornelia; 2nd place, Springer Mountain Farms and 3rd place, Billy Cain Ford.

Merry Christmas Habersham!

Original air date 12/9/15


WEBISODE 5: Rickman Reflects

Mountain Judicial Circuit District Attorney Brian Rickman is serving out his final days in the DA’s office. He was recently appointed to the Georgia Court of Appeals by Gov. Nathan Deal. Rickman will take his seat on the bench January 1, 2016.

Brian Rickman recently sat down with Now Habersham’s Tricia Hise to reflect on his eight years as DA. During their conversation he talked about how he hopes he’s remembered and spoke candidly about some of the high profile cases his office has handled.

Original air date 11/8/15

WEBISODE 4: kNOw More. Community Matters host Tricia Hise talks with Circle of Hope Executive Director Suzanne Dow about local efforts to STOP domestic violence.

Original Air Date 9/3/15

WEBISODE 3: A Habersham County couple speaks out about the negotiated plea deal struck in a child cruelty case involving four of their adopted children. Fran and Ricky Chastain adopted the kids after their previous adoptive parents – former Mt. Airy police chief Richard Burton and his wife Cheryle – were brought up on charges. Originally, the couple faced 28 counts of child cruelty. Richard Burton was also charged with child molestation.

The Burtons pleaded guilty to three of the cruelty charges. In exchange, all other charges were dropped. The Burtons were each sentenced to 10 years – 25 consecutive weekends in jail and the rest on probation. They were also each ordered to pay a $10,000 fine.

Public outrage over the weekend jail time erupted after details of the deal – which was negotiated by an Assistant District Attorney – were announced.

Now Habersham’s Tricia Hise spoke with Mountain Judicial Circuit District Attorney Brian Rickman about why the case was handled as it was and she spoke with the Chastains about their reaction to the outcome.

Editor’s Note: Since this program was recorded the Chastains have filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against the Burtons on behalf of their children.

Original Air Date 8/25/15

WEBISODE 2: Former Habersham County Grand Jury foreman Eric Welborn talks with host, Tricia Hise, about the local grand jury’s decision not to indict officers involved in the May 2014 drug raid that injured toddler Bounkham Phonesavanh.

Original Air Date 7/22/2015

WEBISODE 1: Meet Abby Jackson. With the recent launch of her new magazine and cookbook and increased distribution of her Abby J’s brand of salsas and sauces, this is one Habersham County woman – and brand – that’s on fire!

Original Air Date 6/26/2015


 Check back frequently here on nowhabersham.com and follow us on Facebook for information on new webisodes.

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