Candidates outline hopes Five of the six candidates for the office of District 1 Pittsburg County commissioner told an audience of local voters Tuesday night about their plans and hopes for the district if elected. They spoke to a group of individuals attending the forum hosted by the McAlester News Capital in the Conference Center on the McAlester Campus of Eastern Oklahoma State College. Bill Webber. A sixth candidate, Kevin Burch, planned to attend the forum, but he contacted the newspaper and said he was in Texas, having transported a load of hay to some friends in the flooded Houston area who needed it for their livestock. News Capital Publisher Amy Johns emceed the forum with candidates responding to questions asked by a panel of journalists. Johns welcomed those in attendance and noted the responsibility of living in a democracy. "A democracy belongs nike joggers to us and we participate in it," Johns said. "I appreciate you coming so you can hear these candidates and these gentlemen who have chosen to participate in our democracy." All of the candidates presented both opening and closing statements and were asked questions in a rotating manner so all had an opportunity to be both first and last to deliver their responses. Each of the candidates touted their experience and spoke of their respective reasons about why voters should elect them in the upcoming Sept. 12 Special Election. Gov. Mary Fallin called the special election to fill the seat left vacant by former District 1 Commissioner Gene Rogers, who sent a letter to Fallin nike s size earlier this year stating he could not conclude his present term because of health issues. All six candidates are running as Democrats. Because the election is a special election, there will be no runoff, said Pittsburg County Election Board Secretary Cathy Thornton. Asked during the forum why they are running for the office of District 1 commissioner, the candidates delivered a variety of answers. Lemons, in his answers during the night, kept them relatively brief. He noted that he's been employed with Pittsburg County for 19 years and would like to continue the work he's been doing. He's the longtime District 1 foreman and is currently serving as an interim member of the Pittsburg County Commission to ensure District 1 is represented until the vacant seat is filled. Several times during the night, Lemons said he would do his best as the District 1 commissioner. Charles Rogers said he was mentored by his grandfather, Gene Rogers, and started building roads at a young age. He currently works as a Pittsburg County Commissioner employee in District 3. "I don't want it to be the county way," Charles Rogers said. "I want it to be the right way. "Fix it right the first time," he added. Hall said he's running because he wants to have an impact, especially on the small communities in the district. "I want to make a difference," Hall said. "It's more than just the roads," he said, going on to say he considers roads important. "I'll try to do something for the senior citizens, the youth and the veterans," said Hall. Grivette spoke of his ties to the community and his experience in response to why he's running for District 1 commissioner. He spoke of his experience as a member of the Haileyville Fire Department, where he currently serves as fire chief. "I've been a community builder," Grivette said. He also spoke of his experience in operating heavy equipment working on ebay india nike shoes roads and bridge crews during his years as a Pittsburg County employee. Grivette said he believes he has leadership capabilities. Webber, the former longtime District 1 commissioner, said he's running for office for the people of Pittsburg County. "We have a lot of problems," Webber said. "I've probably built more miles of roads than any other Pittsburg County commissioner." Asked about experience that qualifies them for the office, candidates spoke of their backgrounds. Rogers said he's open to finding new ways to do things. "My grandpa had the knowledge," Charles Rogers said. He said if he doesn't know something, he asks questions. "I'm open minded," Rogers said. "I can learn from these guys." Hall said he has experience working with two different county commissioners and he knows how to get the job done. He too, indicated he's ready to find new ways to achieve those tasks.