February 28, 2013

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Jack Benson (Incumbent) | Age: 83

  • Occupation: Full-time councilman, previous occupations include director of Big Brothers, Big Sisters and assistant superintendent of Chattanooga City Schools
  • I’m seeking reelection because … “I want our elected officials to truly serve the best interests of those being represented. I believe I have the values, vision, wisdom, experience and judgment necessary to represent District 4 and the city correctly.”
  • Pulse Intern Rating: Accessibility: 8 | Responsiveness: 4 | Earnestness: 3 | Pleasant/Eager to Talk: 3 | Perception: 2
  • Benson claims to be in good health, but at 83 can he really have Chattanooga’s progressive instincts at heart? Sometimes it’s best to get fresh ideas from a new leader.
  • Editor’s note: Age is no reason to discount a candidate, but at an advanced age some candidates seem to turn off more voters than they turn on. Knowing when to step aside is often the higher road.

Larry Grohn | Age: 65

  • Occupation: Sales manager at Sears, taught secondary education (social studies and science)
  • Website/Facebook Page: electlarrygrohn.com
  • I’m running because … “Citizens of the fourth district and Chattanooga deserve a councilperson willing to tackle the problems that the past two councils have refused to address. They deserve a council willing to reduce the size of the city government and eliminate the waste and cronyism rampant throughout the budget.”
  • Pulse Intern Rating: Accessibility: 7 | Responsiveness: 8 | Earnestness: 9 | Pleasant/Eager to Talk: 8 | Perception: 8
  • Grohn’s Facebook page, website and basically every comment challenges Benson and the good-ol’-boy system. Right on. I’d vote for him (says our intern).

Ryan King | Age: 38

  • Occupation: Realtor
  • Website/Facebook Page: voteryanking.com
  • I’m running because …  “For far too long the most crucial decisions  that affect all of us  been made in a vacuum and divorced from public input. It’s time to return the reigns of city government back to the residents of Chattanooga. Smart government over just smaller government.”
  • Pulse Intern Rating: Accessibility: 5 | Responsiveness:  4 | Earnestness: 7 | Pleasant/Eager to Talk: 6 | Perception: 6
  • Made good points, but mostly said exactly what was on his Facebook page and website. King seems ultra-professional, maybe a little too slick. He actually asked me “when I needed a statement from him,” as if he needed to think about the one question I asked, which was simply why he was running for office.
  • Editor’s note: King’s website unintentionally (and hilariously) reads “voter yanking.”

Scott McColpin | Age: 46

  • Occupation: President, Chattanooga Title, Inc.
  • Website/Facebook Page: scott-for-city-council.com
  • I’m running because …  “I believe I can make a difference in the community by requiring the city to spend taxpayer money more efficiently and make the tough decisions even though they may not be politically correct.”
  • Pulse Intern Rating: Accessibility: 6 | Responsiveness: 3 | Earnestness: 4 | Pleasant/Eager to Talk: 5 | Perception: 4
  • McColpin has a poorly organized website and is very poor speller.
  • Editor’s note: McColpin reeks of right-wing, backwards notions and has said the new Main Terrain park (which he noted in the Times Free Press is located near the Pachyderm Club, the old-school, white Republican feeding ground) should have been sold to a developer rather than being used as a public park with “no parking.” Sigh.

Tom Tomisek | Age: 64

  • Occupation: Owned and operated TNT Auto Parts for 20 years, now owns and operates TNT Coin Laundries
  • Website/Facebook Page: Facebook.com/tomtomisekdistrictrcitycouncil
  • I’m running because … “The city is constantly working in a way that hurts small business by always coming up with new mandates made by people who have never been in the business. From a business owner’s standpoint, too much money is wasted on pet projects.”
  • Pulse Intern Rating: Accessibility: 8 | Responsiveness: 8 | Earnestness: 7 | Pleasant/Eager to Talk: 8 | Perception: 8
  • Tomisek has a good website and an updated Twitter account for his campaign. He seems to know what small business owners need and is willing to be their advocate on city council.

—Pulse interns Gaby Dixon, Julia Sharp and Esan Swan contributed mightily to this project. The comments following their ratings are their own and do not reflect the opinion of The Pulse. The editor’s notes are his own opinions and do not reflect those of Brewer Media, but do reflect those of The Pulse.

February 28, 2013

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