Chocowinity gets new commissioner, attorney and police chief

Published 6:09 pm Friday, August 10, 2018

CHOCOWINITY — Chocowinity is ringing in the new, with a new town commissioner, a new town attorney and a new police chief.

This week, the Chocowinity Board of Commissioners appointed Nathaniel Williams to fill the seat previously held by Curt Jenkins Jr.

“I just wanted to be a representative of the town. I’ve been in Chocowinity about 46 years now, and I wanted to do what I can do to help. … To make Chocowinity a better place to live — that’s all,” Williams said. “I’m a good listener — I’m a pastor — and I think that together maybe we can help solve some of the problems that we’re facing.”

Williams is pastor of Amazing Grace Church in Chocowinity and People’s Faith Church in Roper and is owner of Williams Power Cleaning in Chocowinity. He will serve the year and a half remaining in Jenkins’ term. Jenkins’ resigned from the board after a failed run for mayor and several arrests for assault charges landed him in jail for a total of 83 days.

Chocowinity Mayor Jimmy Mobley said the four members of the town board made the decision to appoint a new commissioner.

“It was up to the Town Board to appoint whoever they wanted in the seat. Obviously, it’s a nonpartisan seat,” Mobley said.

Chocowinity town attorney Keith Mason has been replaced by his former law firm partner, Amanda Sasnett McKinney. Mason followed in the footsteps of Superior Court Judge Wayland Sermons Jr., serving as Chocowinity’s attorney for many years before being appointed a judge to fill a vacancy. In May, Mason was appointed to fill the Second Judicial District Court vacancy left by the retirement of Chief District Court Judge Michael Paul.

Mobley said they hoped to keep provide the same training ground for McKinney.

“I told her the one requirement of her is that she can stay five or six years, then she can be up for judgeship,” Mobley laughed.

On the law enforcement front, Ralph Whitehurst has been selected to replace former Chocowinity Police Chief Greg Garriss, who has retired, Mobley said.