A retired health care executive has entered next year's race for North Carolina governor, with Jesse Thomas describing himself as a “no-nonsense Republican” who aims to attract a broad middle ground of voters.
Thomas, who led the Medicaid plan offered by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina to hundreds of thousands of consumers, announced his bid on a Greensboro-area podcast last week, when he also filed his candidate committee paperwork.
Recently involved in the North Carolina chapter of the Forward Party — founded by former presidential candidate Andrew Yang — Thomas joins an already crowded GOP gubernatorial field. Candidates include Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson, State Treasurer Dale Folwell, former U.S. Rep. Mark Walker and ex-state legislator Andy Wells.
“North Carolinians are ready for a Governor that will provide real results for our citizens, not one who opines to the Nonsense of the hour,” Thomas said in a news release.
J.W. Williamson was the founding editor in 1972 of the Appalachian Journal: A Regional Studies Review, which he edited until July of 2000. He has taught college classes in Appalachian history, cultural politics, and literature, and he has lectured widely on the pop-culture history of "Appalachia" in the American consciousness. His books include Interviewing Appalachia, Southern Mountaineers in Silent Films, and Hillbillyland: What the Mountains Did to the Movies and What the Movies Did to the Mountains. He has won the Thomas Wolfe Award given by the Western North Carolina Historical Society, the Laurel Leaves Award given by the Appalachian Consortium, a special Weatherford Award given by Berea College, and the Cratis Williams-James Brown Award given by the Appalachian Studies Association.
The views expressed on WataugaWatch are solely those of J.W. Williamson or individual contributors and are not necessarily shared nor endorsed by the Watauga County Democratic Party nor by any other adults of sound mind in this or any other universe.