Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Pender elections director resigns as municipal election campaigns gear up

After less than seven months on the job, Lily Stainback leaves as candidates across the county are gearing up for November's municipal elections.

Pender County will be working with the NCDOT on its planned Hampstead Median Project to build bicycle lanes on a roughly 5-mile stretch of U.S. 17 between Washington Acres Road to Sloop Point Loop Road. (Port City Daily photo/Mark Darrough)
In Hampstead, a campaign sign for Pender County Commissioners candidate Morgan Lashaw, who lost the District 1 seat to incumbent David Williams. (Port City Daily photo/Mark Darrough)

PENDER COUNTY — The county’s director of elections, Lily Stainback, has resigned after less than seven months on the job.

According to Deputy Director Linda LaVere, Stainback submitted her resignation at a recent Board of Elections meeting on Tuesday, March 26, citing personal reasons for her departure.

Last year Stainback was hired after Dennis Boyles, who spent 16 years as elections director, resigned from a system he said had become overly political in nature.

“We were very sad to see her leave because of her depth of knowledge and the type of director she was,” LaVere said Wednesday morning. “We really enjoyed working with her.”

LaVere said her office has published a job posting on the county’s website and is looking to fill the position within the next several weeks. She said a candidate with a depth of experience was crucial, but in the meantime her staff was able to handle its duties.

“We are capable of running the upcoming county-wide elections with the staff we have,” LaVere said.

Stainback’s resignation comes as candidates in towns like Burgaw and Surf City are gearing up their election bids for mayor and city council seats this November.

Chairman George Brown said he met with Stainback last Thursday, after which she departed on good terms with Brown and the county.

“As far as what goes forward now, that’s up to the Board of Elections, not the commissioners … We do not have the authority in their decision-making process,” Brown said.

According to Brown, the employees in the elections office had discussed hiring a contractor in the interim.

According to a job posting for Director of Elections published last week, the position will include an annual salary in the range of $50,700 to $81,000 a year. The position includes functions that will be crucial as candidates prepare for their election bids, including the handling of “notices of candidacy” and related campaign finance reports.

Mark Darrough can be reached at Mark@Localvoicemedia.com

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