Two candidates vie for lone District 10 seat

Gary B. Gray • Apr 29, 2014 at 2:48 PM

Two candidates are qualified this year to compete for one Washington County Commission District 10 seat.

Challenger Forrest Boreing’s name will be on the May 6 Republican primary ballot. He will face incumbent and independent Richard Matherly in the Aug. 7 county general election.

District 10 is located at the county’s southeastern edge. The largely rural area includes the Cherokee and Lamar communities. It is also the district with the lowest number of inhabitants at 4,742.

Boreing, 61, was born in Washington County and graduated from Sulphur Springs High School in 1970.

He has worked on a family farm since he was 6. While finishing school, he earned his State Farmers and American Farmers degrees through the Future Farmers of America. He worked for a while at a sheet metal shop in Johnson City before applying at Eastman Chemical Co.

He began his career there in 1972 in maintenance and went through an apprenticeship program as a maintenance and certified welder. He remained at Eastman, becoming a maintenance mechanic and supervisor at the company coal gasification plant.

He and his wife owned and operated Rock-N-Hill Specialities store in Jonesborough during the late 1990s.

Though he retired in 2007, he went to work as a welder for Fluor, an Eastman subcontractor. In 2010, he went back to Eastman and worked in its Limited Service Employment program as a maintenance mechanic/welder.

In 2013, he worked as an instrument technician for BAE, a subcontractor for the federal government that makes explosives for Holston Army Ammunition Plant. Today, he and his brother continue to take care of the 85-acre family farm.

He is a member and deacon at Boone Trail Baptist Church.

“I’ve been going to the County Commission meetings and observing how things have been done, and I see there is very little communication,” he said. “It seems like there are two different groups there. The biggest thing is there are way too many commissioners. I’d like there to be about half that number. I think that would improve dialogue.”

Boreing said that, if elected, he would not take taxpayer-funded health insurance. He also said commissioners need to treat the county’s checkbook as if it were their own.

“We also need to draw some companies in that will bring jobs,” he said. “The community is really hurting. I’m also very partial to education. My father taught in Washington County schools for 42 years, and my sister is a vice principal.”

Boreing is married and has one child. He ran unsuccessfully for assessor of property in 2012.

The Johnson City Press made numerous attempts to reach Matherly, including calls to the county mayor’s executive assistant, Commission Chairman Greg Matherly and Commissioner Mark Ferguson.

Follow Gary B. Gray on Twitter at @ggrayjcpress. Like him on Facebook at http://on.fb.me/1mQx3n2.

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