PROFILES

Get to know Rep. Karl Gillespie

Rep. Karl Gillespie, R-Macon, is a first-term House member who represents the state’s four westernmost counties: Cherokee, Macon, Clay and Graham. He has a five-hour commute to Raleigh when the legislature is in session. He serves on agriculture, education and wildlife resources committees.

Get to know Rep. Reece Pyrtle

Rep. Reece Pyrtle, R-Rockingham, is one of the House’s newest members, appointed in August 2021 following the death of Rep. Jerry Carter, R-Rockingham. He’s hit the ground running, working on a range of criminal justice and law enforcement bills during this year’s short session.

Get to know Rep. Wesley Harris

Rep. Wesley Harris, D-Mecklenburg, is in his second term representing the southern end of Mecklenburg County, including the Ballantyne community and the town of Pineville. He’s the only economist serving in the legislature – something he’s quick to remind colleagues when taxes and economic issues come up in floor debates.

Get to know Sen. Deanna Ballard

Sen. Deanna Ballard, R-Watauga, has emerged as a key Senate leader on education issues, chairing two education committees, shepherding bills on topics ranging from school reopenings to literacy standards.

Get to know Rep. Garland Pierce

Rep. Garland Pierce, D-Scotland, has represented the South Carolina border county and its neighbors in the House since 2005, making him one of the most senior legislators in the chamber. He’s currently serving as vice-chair of the House Commerce Committee. This session, he successfully sought budget funding for a new …

Get to know Secretary of Administration Pamela Cashwell

Pamela Cashwell has led the N.C. Department of Administration since April 2021 as a key member of Gov. Roy Cooper’s Cabinet. The agency describes its broad range of responsibilities as the “business manager” for state government and “a voice for underserved communities.”

Get to know Rep. Raymond Smith

Rep. Raymond Smith, D-Wayne, is a former Wayne County school board member with a diverse professional background. He’ll be wrapping up his two terms in the House later this year after redistricting left him in a Republican district, and he made an unsuccessful run for Senate instead. Incumbent Senator Toby …

Get to know Rep. Allen Buansi

Rep. Allen Buansi, D-Orange, is one of the newest House members thanks to Rep. Verla Insko’s decision to step down early. Orange County Democrats waited to see the results of the primary before appointing Insko’s replacement, and Buansi – a Chapel Hill Town Councilman – won a close race against …

Get to know Rep. Marcia Morey

Rep. Marcia Morey has represented Durham since 2017, when she made the switch to the legislature after a long tenure as a District Court judge. That background has made her a key figure in the House on criminal justice and court issues.

Get to know Rep. Howard Hunter

Rep. Howard Hunter III, D-Hertford, has represented his hometown of Ahoskie and neighboring counties in northeastern North Carolina since 2015 – holding a seat his late father served from 1989 until 2007.

Get to know Rep.-elect Charles Smith

Rep. Billy Richardson’s retirement has created an open House District 44 in Cumberland County, covering western Fayetteville and surrounding areas. Attorney Charles Smith won the competitive Democratic primary there, and no Republicans are running, so he’ll join the House in January.

Get to know Rep.-elect Kevin Crutchfield

Cattle farmer, sign company owner and real-estate development Kevin Crutchfield won last month’s Republican primary in a newly drawn House District 83 covering portions of Cabarrus and Rowan counties. No Democrats filed for the seat, so Crutchfield will begin his first elected role next year.

Get to know Sen.-elect Eddie Settle

Three-term Wilkes County Commissioner Eddie Settle might have surprised some Raleigh political observers when he defeated two primary opponents last month who had already served in the state legislature.

Get to know Rep.-elect Kanika Brown

Kanika Brown surprised some political observers when she won a Forsyth County Democratic House primary over the husband of the longtime lawmaker who currently holds the seat, Rep. Evelyn Terry.

Get to know Rep. Mike Clampitt

Rep. Mike Clampitt, R-Swain, has the unique distinction of running against the same opponent for five elections in a row. A competitive district in the western mountains of Swain, Jackson and Haywood counties meant that Clampitt and Democratic Rep. Joe Sam Queen traded off in the House seat several times. …