About this series
This is part of a Forsyth County News’ Sunday series taking a look at the contested races for local elected office in the May 24 Republican primary. There are no contested local races in the Democratic primary. Early voting begins May 2.
* BOE District 3 focus on growth
* BOE District 5 draws large field
With more pastures and less growth, north Forsyth can seem a tranquil place. That doesn’t mean there won’t be a tough race to represent the area on the Forsyth County commission.
The race for District 4 in north Forsyth, will feature Commissioner Cindy Jones Mills against newcomer Kelli Warren, an educator. The two will face off in the Republican Primary on May 24, with advance voting beginning on May 2.
Mills has held the seat since 2013 and said that running for a second time has been more challenging.
“It’s much harder doing it once you get into office and all the demands that you have while in office than the first time around,” she said. “It’s harder to find the time to do the things you had the time to do before.”
Mills will be the only incumbent on this year’s ballots for commissioners, as Brian Tam, of District 2, and Jim Boff, of District 5, announced that they would not be seeking re-election for their seats. Mills said there are still projects she would like to see finished.
“There’s just so many things that I wanted to complete,” she said. “Like with the transportation bond, I would like to be able to see the roads be complete that I worked so hard to get done. I want to see the interchange at [Hwy.] 369 and [Ga.] 400.”
Mills said that there are also projects she wants to pursue if elected, including beautification partnerships with area businesses for Ga. 400 interchanges, a senior center with a focus on recreation at Matt Community Park and the completion of Matt Community and Lanierland parks.
She is a mother of two and grandmother of two who worships at Oak Grove Baptist Church, where she is a Sunday school teacher.
Professionally, Mills is president of CMC Trucking Company and a real estate agent with Bryan Properties. She was formerly the general manager of Lanierland Music Park.
Mills will face a challenge from Warren, who could not be reached for comment, but said during a recent meeting of the Forsyth County Republican Party that she would take a stand against uncontrolled growth in the county.
“I grew up in DeKalb County, and I watched what happened to that county with growth and no management,” Warren said. “Now I’m seeing the same thing repeat itself. It’s like déjà vu. I got in this race because I want to make sure that we are controlling the growth and making it productive.”
At that meeting, Warren said she had witnessed the impact of growth on schools while working in both counties.
“I have seen firsthand, in both areas, the effect of that on the students and on the teachers and on the parents, the community as a whole,” she said. “I will work collaboratively with the other commissioners, the sheriff’s department, the board of education [and] anyone else so we can get this county back on track and where it needs to be.”