By Paul Gable
Devon Blackwell kicked off his campaign for Horry County Council District 10 with a barbeque meet and greet in the Red Bluff area earlier this week.
Blackwell is looking to replace incumbent Jody Prince who is retiring from council at the end of this year.
While the evening brought some rain to the hunting camp where the event took place, a good crowd of friends and supporters were on hand.
Blackwell is a first time candidate for political office but is a fifth generation native of Horry County with deep roots in the District 10 communities.
Recently retired from Horry Telephone Cooperative after 35 years with the company, Blackwell said the time is right for him to run for office.
“I have always been interested in politics, especially at the local level,” Blackwell said. “But, I wanted to wait until I retired to run for office. I have already found out campaigning is a full-time job.”
Blackwell said infrastructure, especially roads and drainage, were a concern to his district and throughout the county. He supports making sure first responders are adequately trained and have the equipment necessary to carry out their mission.
In addition, Blackwell said he supported community service projects to clean up litter throughout the county not just the main roads.
Communication with his constituents will be a top priority for Blackwell.
“If you call me with a problem, it is my obligation, as a council member, is to research the issue, then, communicate back to my constituents,” Blackwell said.
With regard to the expenditure of public funds, Blackwell said he will be guided by the question ‘would you spend your own money for this?’
Blackwell said his district, which is the largest land area of all the council districts, has different needs for different areas.
“I know many problems and solutions will be specific to certain areas of the district. What is needed in Carolina Forest is often different from what is needed in Green Sea. But, all areas of the county have a right to serious consideration of their needs,” Blackwell said.
Being a member of council is not a one person job. Blackwell has been married to his wife Debbie for 25 years. They have one son, Carter, who is a senior at the Citadel.
Blackwell is a member of the Conway Baptist Church where he is on the Deacon Board and serves as an assistant Sunday School teacher.
“I believe I can make a difference on council,” Blackwell said. “My corporate experience provides me with a solid basis for making decisions and my long family history in Horry County provides a background for many of the issues the county experiences today.”