Forums showcase candidates’ platforms

Two forums held over the past week gave candidates seeking office a chance to explain why they should be the voter’s pick in May’s Primary election.

During the first event, Democrats took the floor Thursday evening at a forum sponsored by the Knox County Democrat Woman’s Club to share why they should be elected to hold the offices they’re running for. The event was held in the upper conference room of Union College’s Student Center.

Recurring themes throughout the evening focused on helping combat and treat opioid addiction, bringing jobs to Knox County and how those topics were heavily dependent on each other to succeed.

Represented at Thursday’s democrat forum were incumbent Property Valuation Administrator Bill Oxendine, Judge-Executive candidates Michael Warren and Bob Frederick, Sheriff candidate Dennis Rogers, District Four Magistrate candidate Doyle Gibson, and also 82nd district  (which Knox County is not in) State Representative candidate Stefanie Kingsley, who attended to show support for Knox County democrats.

On Tuesday, the Knox County Chamber of Commerce sponsored a Judge-Executive Candidate Forum for all parties at the Knox County Public Schools Annex. Candidates were posed with questions on topics covering the county economy, work requirements for Medicaid benefits, roades, taxes and fire department fees. Each candidate was able to invite five people, and members from the Chamber of Commerce were also invited to attend. The hour-and-a-half event was live-streamed through, and Facebook.

Attending Tuesday’s forum were candidates Bob Frederick (D), Jeff Phipps (R), Charles Sprinkles (R), Mike Mitchell (R) and Mike Eversole (R).

The video from Tuesday’s forum can be viewed on

Live coverage of the May 22 Primary Election will be streamed on, and Barbourville TV Channel 4 in a partnership with The Mountain Advocate and Knox County Public Schools. The live election night coverage will begin at 6 p.m.