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Greensboro attorney Frankie T. Jones Jr., who serves on numerous public boards and has been chair of the Guilford County Planning & Zoning Commission since 2017, has been nominated by Guilford County Democrats to fill the seat on the Board of Commissioners that was created by the death of Carolyn Coleman.

Jones was chosen by about 40 Democrats who live in Coleman’s District 7 from among three candidates to be fill the spot, Guilford County Democratic Party Chair Kathy Kirkpatrick said. Anthony Izzard and Deborah Ford also were considered.

Frankie T. Jones Jr.
Frankie T. Jones Jr. (LinkedIn)

Coleman, a longtime civic activist who had represented District 7 since 2002 and was the board’s first African American chair, died Jan. 26.

Democrats in her district, which is comprised largely of those in Pleasant Garden and East Greensboro, got to nominate the person would fill out her term. The seat is up for election for a full, 4-year term on Nov. 8.

Kirkpatrick said she expects Jones will be approved by commissioners.

“I do not expect that to be a problem,” she said. “[Board of Commissioners Chair] Skip Alston backs him. There should be no problem.”

Jones actively pursued the appointment in a release distributed on Feb. 7. In addition to heading the county’s planning board, he serves on the Greensboro Planning & Zoning Commission, the Piedmont Triad Regional Water Authority Board and the Greensboro ABC Board. He also served on the Greensboro Board of Adjustment. He has roles with numerous nonprofit and volunteer organizations.

He is vice president & managing director in the Investments Department at Lincoln Financial and previously was a partner at Smith Moore Leatherwood LLP, he said in the release. Jones earned a bachelor’s degree from Davidson College and his law degree at the University of Virginia.

Late Guilford County Commissioner Carolyn Coleman

Coleman, who was 79, had filed to seek re-election during the roughly 24 hours the process was open in December before the state Supreme Court stopped it as part of its review of redistricting maps. Filing is scheduled to resume on Feb. 24, and the Primary Election is scheduled for May 17. But those dates could be subject to further delay.

Guilford County Elections Director Charlie Collicutt wrote in an email that his office would “run the primary and general like normal to elect somebody to the regular 4-year term, just like we would normally.” 

Coleman, known as a “firebrand” for her civic protests and 30 years of serving the NAACP’s national board, was elected to the Board of Commissioners in December 2002. She was named the board’s chair in 2005.

The cause of her death has not been disclosed.