The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Five races contested in primary


PNT senior writer

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The Roosevelt County candidates running in the June 3 primary are a mix of experienced professionals and novices.

Tuesday was the only day to file for county and state positions.

Twenty candidates filed for positions, and ten of them are incumbents. There are five races that will be contested in the primary.

County Commission District 3 Republican candidate Lewis Shane Lee raises cattle and grows alfalfa in Dora.

Lee has never served on the commission but feels he has strong ties to the community and said he was encouraged by the current county commissioners to run.

“I just try to help out the community,” said Lee, who is interested in wind energy projects in the county.

Charles Bennett, a real estate broker, will face off against Lee in the primary. Bennett has never served on the commission either.

In District 4, Republican candidate and incumbent Scott Burton, a business owner and real estate agent, said he’s learned a lot in the three years he’s been with the commission.

“I enjoyed serving the people and I have a fair knowledge about what’s going on and we have a pretty good board as it is now,” said Burton when asked on why he was seeking re-election. “I’ve learned a lot and I enjoy it.”

His opponent, Gene Creighton, 72, is a former commissioner who served two terms. The business owner and Elida rancher said he worked to fix the roads in the county and enjoyed his experience with the commission.

“I’ve got a strong interest in this county and this district,” Creighton said. “I enjoyed working with the people. There’s good employees at the county and I just wanted to serve again.”

Roosevelt County clerk Republican candidate Beverly Bennett will face off against incumbent DeAun Searl for county clerk.

Bennett, a real estate broker, feels her skills will make her an asset to the county.

“I think I am a very organized person,” Beverly Bennett said. “I bring a lot of leadership skills and I think my talent can be used.”

Searl was appointed to the clerk position in December and has served in the office for about five years.

Magistrate Judge Linda Short, a Republican, put in her bid to stay on the bench, pitting her against Roosevelt County deputy Timothy Gibson.

Short, 49, has served in the court for 22 years and was elected judge in 2010.

Gibson, 31, said wants to continue his public service by running for judge.

“It’s just something I have dreamed about,” Gibson said. “I feel like I could serve our community and make a difference.”

The county assessor seat has three people vying for the position including Republican incumbent Kenner Carrasco, who was appointed in July 2011. Carrasco, 46, has served in the assessor’s office for 12 years.

His Republican opponent George Beggs has also served in the office for nearly 13 years. He feels his experience qualifies him to be assessor.

“I just want to better myself and help the pubic out and work for the taxpayers,” said Beggs.

Royene Tivis, the Democratic candidate running for assessor, will run unopposed in the primary.

Tivis, 70, has served as assessor and has worn several other hats in that office within the 22 years she was employed there. The long-time Roosevelt County resident is currently unemployed.

“I’m concerned about the citizens of Roosevelt County and I just like the job and the people and I just want to work in there,” said Tivis about her desire to run.

Charles Perez is the only Democratic candidate running for Roosevelt County sheriff. Perez has served 32 years in law enforcement, with 26 of those years in Roosevelt County, and is also an Air Force veteran.

Perez has served as chief deputy of the sheriff’s office during the 12 years he worked there, retired from the Portales Police Department in 2008 and currently works as a patrolman for the Eastern New Mexico University Police Department.

“I believe with our Democratic form of government, it think it does the community a disservice to not have choices in a political campaign as important as sheriff,” Perez said. “I want to offer a different form of leadership and decided to file candidacy to give residents a choice.”

The current chief deputy of the sheriff’s office, Malin Parker, is the Republican candidate for sheriff.

There are two candidates for Ninth Judicial District attorney running unopposed in the primary, Democrat Jennifer Burrill and Republican Andrea Reeb.


The following people have filed for candidacy in the June 3 primary election:

Magistrate Judge


• Timothy J. Gibson

• Linda J. Short (I)

County Commission District 3


• Charles D. Bennett

• Lewis Shane Lee

County Commission District 4


• Gene Creighton

• Scott L. Burton (I)

County Commission District 5


• Kendell R. Buzard (I)

County Clerk


• DeAun D. Searl (I)

• Beverly A. Bennett

County Assessor


• Royene Tivis


• Kenner Carrasco (I)

• George S. Beggs

County Sheriff


• Charles R. Perez


• Malin K. Parker

State Representative District 63


• George Dodge (I)

State Representative District 66


• Bob Wooley (I)

State Representative District 67


• Dennis J. Roch (I)

Ninth Judicial District Court

Division 3 Judge


• Fred Travis Van Soelen (I)

District Attorney Ninth Judicial District


• Jennifer Jean Burrill


• Andrea R. Reeb (I)


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