Rockwell experiences turnover, new leaders look to the experience already present

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 9, 2023

ROCKWELL — With the retirement of Mayor Beau Taylor and Alderman Justin Crews’ decision not to run again, Rockwell will be seeing some turnover in town hall. Chuck Bowman, who is currently an alderman, was elected as Taylor’s successor and newcomers Jay Stake and Fred West will be joining the town’s board of aldermen.

Although he already has experience with governing Rockwell as a long-time alderman, Bowman said that he appreciates the fact that Taylor will still be available in case he has any questions about his new role.

“He lives two doors down from me and I told him I would be calling him if I ever needed any help with anything,” said Bowman.

For the new aldermen, West noted that in the first few months, he is going to be looking to glean as much information and advice as possible from the members of the board with experience in the role. Stephanie Walker, Dillon Brewer and Chris Cranford were all reelected in this year’s election.

“I’m really looking to just learn from the other aldermen. I want to learn how everything flows, learn from the ones with the experience about everything that needs to be done,” said West.

Both Bowman and West said that they appreciated the opportunity that voters have given them and that they are excited to move forward in their new roles.

“It’s not really sunk in yet, we spent a long day at the polls so we’re really tired, but I’m definitely excited for the opportunity,” said Bowman.

Stake said that he would not use the word excited to describe his emotions, but he was appreciative and looking forward to joining the board.

“I’m a believer that if you do something, you do it 110 percent. I think that things need to be done around here, so I stepped up to do it. I’ve been on the zoning committee for three years, so I have seen the growth and I want to make sure Rockwell keeps growing and we do it right,” said Stake.

All three noted that one of the main challenges facing the town right now is the growth that all of Rowan County, including Rockwell, is experiencing.

Bowman received 141 votes in the mayoral election while Stake received 67 and West received 73 votes in their elections. All of Rockwell’s races were uncontested, so the results should not change even though the numbers are still unofficial and subject to certification.