Terry Van Duyn announced Feb. 10 that she’s running for a seat on the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners in District 3, which stretches from Arden in the south to Sandymush in the northwest.
A retired Systems Analyst, Van Duyn is the second Democrat to officially declare her candidacy in the district, with business woman Michelle Pace Wood already in the race.
Democrat Randy Flack, a former regional field representative for Rep. Heath Shuler, is also rumored to be strongly considering a run; if he jumps in to the race it will trigger a primary within the party.
Under the new election system engineered in the N.C. General Assembly last year, commissioner District 3 (which corresponds to N.C. House District 116) has the most conservative demographics in the county. All of the candidates are vying for two open seats on the board.
Van Duyn has been active with a number of large nonprofits in the area, serving on the boards of Meals on Wheels, the Autism Society of North Carolina, and the Council on Aging, among others.
Here’s the full announcement from Van Duyn:
Terry Van Duyn Announces Candidacy for Buncombe County Commission
Long-time community volunteer Terry Van Duyn announced today that she is running for Buncombe County Commissioner in the new District 3 (NC House District 116).
“I am running because I believe that everyone deserves a place at the table,” said Van Duyn. “I believe that elected leaders should be responsive, available, accessible, transparent, and fair. As a commissioner I will represent all of the people of District 3 and I will bring their voices to the table.” Van Duyn says her campaign will reach out to voters, listening to their concerns, and working to bring those concerns to the table.
Van Duyn says she is frustrated by the way that politics in Raleigh have hurt our mountain communities. “In Buncombe County we take care of our neighbors and we should not let the divisive politics in Raleigh turn us against each other in these tough times.”
Democrat Van Duyn has been a long-time community advocate for children and families. “Voters can count on me to stand up for schools, support teachers, and work for a better future for all of our children,” she says.
“I was the first person in my family to go to college,” says Van Duyn. “I went to a public university and my husband and I were able to succeed because of good public schools. I believe that supporting teachers and schools is one of the most important things we can do.”
Van Duyn believes that the important issues in this election are already clearly defined: “The economy is the most important issue in most people’s lives right now,” said Van Duyn. “I am committed to bringing good jobs to Buncombe County and creating new opportunities for the people of Buncombe County.”
As a retired Systems Analyst, Van Duyn wants to put her background in technology to work for Buncombe County. “We can use technology to do more with less and to make our government work better for people,” says Van Duyn. She also believes that technology is the key to improving our economy. “We need to use technology to improve people’s lives and we need to prepare our young people to succeed in a high-tech world.”
“I am committed to getting Buncombe County working again, bringing jobs to WNC and building a strong local economy,” she said. “We need good jobs that enable working families to own a home, save for retirement, and send their children to college. And we need our young people to be prepared to take on the challenge. We need to invest in schools to prepare our young people to succeed.” Van Duyn says she is also committed to attracting new industry to the region: “Our region can become a hub for science and technology – a place where our young people are able to find jobs instead of having to leave the area to look for work.”
Van Duyn has been an active volunteer in Buncombe County for the past 20 years. “I am committed to community service,” said Van Duyn. “I am running for County Commissioner to continue serving my community and helping make Buncombe County a better place.”
As a community volunteer, Van Duyn has been focused on getting results. “We have some great examples of partnerships between Buncombe County and nonprofits, partnering up to do more with less and improve lives,” says Van Duyn. “This is what I would like to see more of as a County Commissioner.”
Van Duyn’s community service in Buncombe County includes past and current Board service with: the Preservation Society of Asheville and Buncombe County (Treasurer), Carolina Day School (Board of Trustees), Key Learning Center (Advisory Board), Rainbow Mountain Children’s School (Board member), Meals on Wheels (Board member), Autism Society of North Carolina (Board member), the Council on Aging (Board member), WCQS (Board member), the Children’s Welfare League (Board member). She has also been an active volunteer with Children First/Communities in Schools, serving on the Advocacy Committee, the Family Resource Center, and the TEACCH program, as well as having served as a Precinct Chair in the Democratic Party and a Boy Scout Den Mother. As Board Chair of Pisgah Legal Services and Secretary and Distribution Chair of the Board of the Community Foundation of WNC, Van Duyn has worked to support people in need in Buncombe County. As Advocacy Chair of Women for Women, she has been a fierce advocate for disadvantaged women and children.
Van Duyn holds a B.A. from the University of Illinois and an M.B.A. from the University of Connecticut. She lives with her husband Ted in South Asheville. Terry and Ted have two adult children who were raised in Buncombe County.
Van Duyn’s campaign kickoff is scheduled for Thursday, March 1 at Sluder Branch Farm in Leicester.
Voters can learn more about Terry Van Duyn’s campaign at: www.VoteVanDuyn.com or www.facebook.com/VoteVanDuyn.