Five aldermen seats up for grabs after deadline

Staff Writer

The slate of candidates in the upcoming municipal election has been finalized and now only time will tell who will take the reigns in Starkville.

The race for the mayor’s office features three Democrats, with no Republicans filing before the qualifying deadline last Friday.

The primary date is scheduled for Tuesday, May 2, with a run-off on Tuesday, May 16. The general election will be held on Tuesday, June 6.

Here is a breakdown of the mayoral race and seven races for the Starkville Board of Aldermen.


Johnny Moore

Party: Democrat

Experience: Moore has practiced law in Starkville for 30 years and is a graduate of Mississippi State University.

Damion Poe

Party: Democrat

Experience: Poe, 26, is the youngest candidate in the mayoral race. Poe is a graduate of Starkville High School and served in the Mississippi Army National Guard from 2010 to 2016.

Lynn Spruill

Party: Democrat

Experience: Spruill, a retired naval officer, pilot and attorney, is the owner of Spruill Property Management in Starkville. Spruill previously served as the CAO for the city of Starkville.



Ben Carver (incumbent)

Party: Republican

Experience: Carver is seeking his third term on the board and has worked as a governmental training officer since 2004. He is also the owner of Bully Dawgs, a mobile hamburger and hotdog vending business. He holds a Master’s of Public Policy and Administration from Mississippi State University and a Bachelor’s of Business Administration from Delta State University.

Jason Camp

Party: Republican

Experience: Has represented Ward 1 on the Starkville Planning and Zoning Commission since June 2015. Camp works with the MSU Extension Service and is a graduate of Mississippi State University.

Christine Williams

Party: Democrat

Experience: Williams served in the Army Reserves and the Georgia Army National Guard and worked as a juvenile probation officer before coming to Starkville in 2005. Williams has also worked in the MSU Office of Research Compliance. She holds a Master’s in Public Policy and Administration from MSU and a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice Sociology from the University of Georgia.


Lisa Wynn (incumbent)

Party: Independent

Experience: Wynn seeks to serve a second term on the board. Wynn beat challenger and former Alderman Sandra Sistrunk in a close run-off in 2013,

Sandra Sistrunk

Party: Democrat

Experience: Sistrunk represented Ward 2 from 2009 to 2013. She previously worked as a certified public accountant and has worked in the health care sector. She currently works as the accountant and payroll manager for Spruill Property Management.

Jesse M. Carver

Party: Republican

Experience: Carver is a Starkville native who pitched for the Mississippi State baseball team. He currently works as an agent for New York Life Insurance. He is the brother of Ward 1 Alderman Ben Carver.


David Little (incumbent)

Party: Republican

Experience: Little, the current Ward 3 Alderman, is running uncontested and will serve his second term on the board. Little works as a claims manager with Mississippi Farm Bureau Casualty Insurance Co.


Jason Walker (incumbent)

Party: Democrat

Experience: Walker will look to secure his second term on the board. Walker works an an associate professor in the Landscape Architecture department at MSU, where he graduated with a degree in Landscape Architecture.

W.B. (Pete) Ledlow, Jr.

Party: Republican

Experience: Ledlow has owned and operated Pete’s Transmission Shop on Louisville Street for 37 years.


Chase Neal

Party: Republican

Experience: Neal, a native of Meridian, served seven years in the Mississippi Air National Guard before attending MSU, where he graduated in 2011. Neal works in marketing and branding and told the SDN he plans to fund his campaign out of pocket.

Patrick Miller

Party: Democrat

Experience: Miller is a native of Ocean Springs, Mississippi, and currently serves as the Ward 5 commissioner on the Starkville Planning and Zoning Board. Miller holds a Master’s in Public Policy and Administration from MSU and also works as a faculty instructor with the MSU Extension Center for Government and Community Development.

Kayla Gilmore

Party: Democrat

Experience: Gilmore is the owner of KMG Creations Dance and Fitness, LLC. She has also served two terms as city election commissioner, in addition to other local organizations, such as the Starkville Area Arts Council.


Roy A’ Perkins

Party: Democrat

Experience: Perkins - who is the longest serving Alderman on the board, is running uncontested in the upcoming municipal elections. Perkins will be serving his seventh term on the board. He has practiced law in Starkville for nearly three decades.


Henry Vaughn (incumbent)

Party: Democrat

Experience: Vaughn has served on the board since 2009. He will be seeking his third term on the board.

Roben W. Dawkins

Party: Republican

Experience: Dawkins will be running for office for the first time in the upcoming municipal election. He has been employed as a pilot for Mississippi State University for the last 27 years

Margaret Moore

Party: Democrat

Experience: A career health care worker, Moore currently works for Mississippi Ability in Healthcare. This will be Moore’s first pole tidal campaign.