Julia Howard becomes senior member of NC House

Published 9:09 am Friday, November 16, 2018

By Mark Wineka

The Salisbury Post

N.C. Rep. Julia Howard of Mocksville, a 30-year veteran in the state House, won re-election last week to a 16th term.

The Republican scored a clear-cut victory over Democrat Bonnie Clark of Davie County in House District 77, which includes all of Davie County and portions of Rowan.

Howard captured 73.5 percent of the total vote by outpolling Clark 23,324 to 8,387 votes.

“I appreciate the trust that voters expressed in me,” Howard said Tuesday night after results were posted. “I work hard and try to respond to the concerns they have in the district, and there’s a lot of them.”

With her victory, Howard will become the senior member of the N.C. House in the 2019 session.

Howard won the vote in both counties by a large margin. In her home Davie County, she garnered 12,695 votes (74.3 percent) to Clark’s 4,384.In Rowan, Howard had 10,629 votes (72.6 percent) to Clark’s 4,003.

Howard, 74, is owner of Howard Realty in Mocksville. Clark, 63, is a farmer and Navy veteran who was running for office for the first time.

Howard said she never met her opponent. “It was an overall clean race, and the voters just expressed their desire,” Howard said. “I’m glad it wasn’t an ugly race.”

Other races in the N.C. House were more volatile Tuesday, and Howard spent much of the night watching them. She said it looked as though Republicans could lose seats in Wake and Forsyth counties.

Howard said she will continue to work for her constituents, returning their calls and trying to help when she can.

“I appreciate the confidence of the people of Davie who know me and especially Rowan,” where she said she will be spending more time getting to know people over the next two years.

This was the first time Howard’s legislative district included any part of Rowan County. She was last elected to the 79th District, which was redrawn, putting her into the 77th.

Howard said she visited all 30 precincts in her new district Tuesday.