The McLean County Republican Committee selected Curtis Dame as their candidate for judge-executive for the November election. Dame is currently an ag agent in Hopkins County in addition to being involved with their chamber of commerce, economic development corporation and other organizations.
Dame says that the ties he has to the farming community here helped persuade him that he would be a good fit for the office. Dame is unbiased in his line of work, and he plans on continuing with that perspective.
"A lot of people, when you talk politics, will look at what letter is behind your name," said Dame. "For me, I feel like I have an "A" behind my name for agriculture, and I'm proud of that."
He said that the recent announcement took him by surprise.
"I think the Republican party was blessed to have a lot of very qualified candidates to go through this process," said Dame.
Dame said that his top three priorities should he be elected are accountability, transparency and honesty. In the pursuit of transparency, he would like to see the fiscal court meetings livestreamed on Facebook.
He is also concerned with population decline in the county.
"Population decline is something that we need to figure out how to at least slow or address," said Dame. "We are below trend lines on census data."
Gov. Matt Bevin appointed Edward West as McLean County's judge-executive earlier last month.
The position became available when former Judge-Executive Mike Burden, who took office in January after being elected last November, abruptly announced his resignation in April. Burden cited "personal issues and lack of support" as his reason for resigning.
West, a lifelong resident of McLean County, worked in former U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield's office for 16 years as well as for the Green River Area Development District for five years. His family has been in McLean County since 1790. West was not the candidate chosen by the McLean County Republican Committee, but he is still considering running this November.
"Let's just say that all options are being weighed," said West.