Jones first unanimous vote to lead county board in years

Published 2:01 pm Wednesday, December 7, 2022

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By Mike Barnhardt

Enterprise Record

Brent Shoaf accomplished something Monday evening that hasn’t been done in quite a while.

Just minutes after being sworn in as the newest Davie County commissioner, Shoaf nominated a fellow board member for chair. Mark Jones was elected chair unanimously, something that has not happened in recent years.

The vice chair’s job was also a unanimous decision, with Benita Finney getting the nod.

Finney and Shoaf were sworn into office Monday, Finney serving her second term, and Shoaf his first, replacing outgoing board chair, James Blakley.

Shoaf said that he is humbled by the support he has received, and read from prepared remarks, because “people tend to hang onto every word we say … I want to say what I mean and mean what I say.”

He talked about growth, and how it can fit in to the county’s vision and mission statements.

“Growth is certain in our county,” he said. “We can’t be anti-growth because it’s going to hit us whether we want it or not because we’re in a popular location and in a popular state. Growth and prosperity are necessary to build a sustainable future for Davie County.”

That, Shoaf said, will require deliberate planning, and keeping high expectations.

“That used to be the Davie County way. We’ve gotten away from it a little but I think we need to get back to it so that our current quality of life can be sustained while still celebrating and maintaining the rural heritage and character that makes Davie County Davie County.

“We have something special in Davie County. We need to be good stewards of what God and our community has blessed us with. We need to grow and prosper … but it needs to be deliberate, purposeful and with a well thought out agenda.

“Keep in mind, many of our newer citizens came here to allow Davie County to change their lives, but not to change Davie County.”

Shoaf and Finney were sworn into office by District Court Judge Jimmy Myers, who is retiring at the end of the year after 28 years on the bench.

“It has been a joy, a pleasure and a highlight of my life,” Myers said.