• Pitt County Board of Commissioners, District B

    Tom Coulson vs. Daniel Van Liere

    Tom Coulson

    Your current job: Retired General Manager and Engineer

     

    Your education: Civil Engineering

     

    What will your top priority be if you are elected or re-elected?

     

    What: Finding a way to reduce Pitt County poverty level. Why: Pitt County currently has over 40,000 people in poverty. I believe we can never be a successful county until we significantly reduce that number. How: By going beyond current approaches, that while good, have proven unable to reduce this core poverty level in the county.

     

    How will you involve your constituents in the process of making decisions?

     

    I always answer emails, texts and phone calls. I am an easy contact for anyone from any district. I am engaged in several community boards.

     

    Why should voters choose you for the position you are running for?

     

    I have a business background and apply that knowledge and experience, where possible, in government. I am a fiscal conservative. I am pro-education and have a history of strong support for all levels of schooling. I have unwavering support for law enforcement.

     

    What three things about you do you most want voters to know?

     

    I am fair. I am honest. I admit it if I make a mistake or am wrong.

     

    Is there anything else you wish to say?

     

    We need to build trust throughout Pitt County.

     

     

    Daniel Van Liere

    Your current job: Director, Government Relations at Vidant Health

     

    Your education: Bachelor of Science, Geography, ECU; Master’s in Public Administration, ECU.

     

    What will your top priority be if you are elected or re-elected?

    I believe that economic development is the top priority for Pitt County With an unemployment rate around 8.8%, above the average for North Carolina. While some could say this is due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, this must be addressed regardless, in order to be successful in ensuring the citizens of Pitt County have access to all necessary resources to live a healthy and productive life. I will work with county and municipal officials to prioritize the people of Pitt County by creating an environment that is welcoming to new business, incentivizing existing businesses to expand, and promote entrepreneurship. This environment comes from strong and successful schools, adequate transportation and infrastructure networks, and a safe environment for our citizens to live in.

     

    How will you involve your constituents in the process of making decisions?

    The current COVID-19 environment we are all currently living in has opened us all up to new ways to communicate and be available. Virtual town halls are now a viable option that allows citizens the ability to communicate with their elected officials from the safety of their homes.

     

    Why should voters choose you for the position you are running for?

    As we face the dawn of a new decade, we find ourselves with an opportunity to shape a path that will have long-lasting impacts, not only on Pitt County, but all of eastern North Carolina. I have spent my career collaborating with local, state, and federal officials to improve transportation, healthcare, and economic opportunities across eastern North Carolina. I graduated from ECU, met my wife here, and have chosen to raise my family here - in Pitt County - because I know its potential.

     

    What three things about you do you most want voters to know?

    1) I believe that it not how individuals agree that is important, but how they disagree. I understand that I am not always going to see eye to eye with everyone that I encounter, but as county commissioner I will work to represent all the citizens of the county, not simply those which share similar beliefs. 2) While I am not originally from Pitt County, I have lived a majority of my life in Pitt County. I have lived in Ayden, Winterville, Greenville, and just outside of Simpson. 3) I am the first member of my family to attend and graduate from college.

     

    Is there anything else you wish to say?

    As an Independent candidate, I was required to collect 1,578 signatures in order for my name to even be included on the November ballot. Over four months, I spent nights and weekends working hard to collect signatures. In the end, I collected 1,723 approved signatures from independent, democrat, and republican voters, who believed enough in my message to give me the opportunity to earn their vote. Now, I’m asking for your faith and support to become your next Pitt County commissioner as I work to make our shared vision of Pitt County a reality.