Friday, July 19, 2024

Former Middle East contractor enters James City County Supes’ race

An engineer who has spent more than two decades working as a contractor in the Middle East has entered the James City County Board of Supervisors’ race.

Tom M. Phillips, a Republican living in Williamsburg, has submitted only some of the necessary paperwork needed to secure his place on the November ballot for the Jamestown district seat, according to county General Registrar Dianna Moorman.

Moorman said he has until June 13 by 7 p.m. to submit the remaining paperwork needed to become certified.

Two district seats are up for grabs on the Board of Supervisors including the Jamestown and Powhatan seats.

Phillips has wanted to run for the Board of Supervisors for years, but his work as a contractor kept him overseas, he said.

With his return to Virginia two years ago, Phillips says the time is right to enter the race for the Jamestown seat on the Board of Supervisors.

“I’m a problem solver type person, and I care about my community, and I feel like I can contribute significantly,” he said during a telephone interview Tuesday.  “Many of the issues at present are issues that are in my wheelhouse of experience.  My goal would be to bring forward solutions in the areas of water supplies.”

Phillips, who says he’s a “social” and “fiscal conservative,” believes with his background and experience in heavy civil engineering, construction and the water industry, he would serve the county and residents well in the Supervisor’s role.

As stated on Phillips’ resume, the candidate has spent nearly two and a half decades of his 40-year career working and living abroad in nine countries including Jordan, Egypt, Kuwait, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Philippines and Australia.

He now opposes former Supervisor Jim Icenhour, a Democrat for the Jamestown district seat.

Icenhour seeks to regain the seat he lost in 2013 to Board Chairman Republican Kevin Onizuk, who is stepping out of politics.

Meanwhile, current Supervisor Michael Hipple is running as an Independent for the Powhatan district seat.  He faces a challenge from newcomer Republican Joe Swanenburg, who is favored by the James City County Republican Committee.

Hipple, who said previously he’s “always going to be a Republican,” was denied admittance to the county Republican committee earlier this year, according to past WYDaily coverage.

There are currently no other candidates who have entered the James City County Supervisor race at this time, according to Moorman.

The James City County Board of Supervisors serve in four-year staggered terms. The 2017 election has two seats open out of a five total seats.

In 2019, the Berkeley, Roberts and Stonehouse district seats will be up for grabs.

The final filing deadline for all candidates who seek to run for the Board of Supervisors is Tuesday, June 13.

Steve Roberts Jr. contributed to this story. WYDaily archives were used in this story.

CORRECTION: 1:06 a.m.: A previous version of this story had misidentified Michael Hipple as a “registered Republican.” In the Commonwealth of Virginia there are no party registrations.





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