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Darrell Duncan: Giving back to Kingsport

Amy Millhorn Leonard • May 12, 2019 at 4:30 PM

Editor's Note: This is a paid political ad. Darrell Duncan is an alderman candidate in the May 21 Kingsport Municipal Election. Early voting is currently underway at the Kingsport Civic Auditorium and in Blountville.

Darrell Duncan has been “giving back” to the Kingsport community for 38 years.

It started almost immediately after he and his wife Sharon moved to Kingsport from Gate City. Darrell has been a strong supporter of Kingsport and devoted community volunteer ever since. He says, “Kingsport is a great place to live, work and raise a family.”

Darrell’s “giving back” started years ago with the Duncans’ love for Christmas. For years, he’s been “filling in for Santa Claus” when Santa cannot appear in Kingsport at parades, homes, the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Kingsport and many other organizations and events.

Darrell gained valuable city government experience when he served on the Kingsport Board of Mayor and Aldermen from 2015 to 2017 and says, “It is one of the highest honors you can have as a citizen. It is wonderful to serve the community and see Kingsport grow and prosper.

“Kingsport has a great future ahead. We haven’t quite reached our potential for growth and development and I would love to be elected again to the Board of Mayor and Alderman to help Kingsport reach that potential,” Darrell explains. “The election on May 21 is critical for Kingsport with retiring city leadership and board turnover including a new mayor and city manager and my experience is needed. My experience and the leadership I gained while serving my previous BMA term certainly separates me from most of the candidates currently running. It is vital that all new members work together and formulate a plan together.”

Darrell believes there are some important issues facing the incoming Board of Mayor and Aldermen.

The first is economic development. He says, “Kingsport’s population is decreasing, and we must work with developers and the ‘Move to Kingsport’ organization to bring more retail businesses as well as industries to Kingsport, while also attracting more people to live here.”

Second is healthcare. Darrell declares, “We must work to maintain the highest level of healthcare services for our citizens and losing any of those services should be of great concern to the BMA.”

Third is work force development. “Not all high school graduates will follow the college career path. We must spur their interest in vocation of technical skills like at the Regional Center for Advanced Manufacturing (RCAM) to create and maintain a highly skilled work force,” Darrell states.

The fourth issue is working closely with outside agencies to understand and help to change homelessness which he feels is an important community issue and not just a city problem.

Lastly, as a resident of Downtown Kingsport, Darrell declares, “we have a wonderful and large downtown area. I would like to see more revitalization and renovation downtown including recruiting new businesses and retaining ones already in downtown. Even though we have lost a couple of businesses lately, new businesses like Reedy Creek Bicycles, Bays Mountain Brewing Company and Kingsport’s Axe House have recently opened.”

You might see Darrell Duncan going door-to-door in Kingsport during the campaign. Make sure and shake his hand and share your Kingsport vision. You can learn more about Darrell on Facebook (@DuncanforKingsport) or Twitter (@DuncanDarrell). He would appreciate your vote on Election Day, May 21. Early voting in Kingsport is May 9-16 at the Civic Auditorium.

More about Darrell Duncan

In 2016, Darrell retired from Eastman Chemical Company after 40 years and started working at the Kingsport location for Cerdia, a European-based chemical company. Seven years ago, Darrell became a licensed realtor joining his wife Sharon who has been a realtor for several years at Town & Country Realty. The Duncans attend First Broad Street United Methodist Church. They both love entertaining and traveling and Darrell enjoys golf when time permits.

Darrell presently serves on six different boards in Kingsport, but the board he most wants to serve on is the Board of Mayor and Aldermen. He is also a member of a civic club and volunteers with nonprofit groups and organizations. One of his most rewarding volunteer experiences started over 10 years ago and occurs every fall. That is when Darrell accompanies Dobyns-Bennett football players to visit the pediatric ward at Holston Valley/Ballad Health each Thursday evening during football season. “It really impacts the players to visit kids of all ages that are battling health issues and it lets them know what is really important in life. We are always welcomed by the families who are surprised and impressed by our visit,” Darrell explains.

Tragically in 2006, Darrell and Sharon lost their only daughter Caitlyn, a rising senior at Dobyns-Bennett and talented band musician and dancer. In her memory, the Duncans set up two scholarships for outstanding Dobyns-Bennett band students which have been awarded each year since her untimely passing. Additionally, there is a dance scholarship at Intercity Ballet, where Caitlyn danced. Darrell himself has been dancing at Intercity Ballet in their annual production of “The Nutcracker” for several years. He is also member of Kingsport ShowTime.

Paid for Darrell Duncan for Alderman, Sharon Duncan, Treasurer.

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