County Council candidates have their say

Farr, Rega challenge incumbent Jackson for Richland County Council seat 9.


Calvin Chip Jackson

The views and values which influence my work, my life and my advocation are centered around  LEADERSHIP.

Strong Leadership is absolutely essential in order to be effective in serving the citizens of District 9.

Citizens of District 9 deserve to have the best leadership on Richland County Council, fighting for ALL of them.

Leadership is the ability to assess situations and issues from various points of view, and always being willing to accept new facts, not previously known. It is also having the experience to understand the impact of decisions, BEFORE they occur.  Leadership has the COURAGE to tackle the tough issues, whenever they appear, and the boldness to speak up for ALL communities that are affected.

Leadership recognizes that often there no easy answers, but makes the right decisions, even when it is not the easy decision to make.

Leadership looks to the FACTS to shape solutions, knowing that not everyone will be pleased with the outcome.  It will stand up and seek justice at all times for all citizens.

Leadership has the skills to address current crisis, while recognizing that at the same time, that business and services of the county must not be neglected.

Leadership is clear in its position and accountable for its actions. It is willing to own every decision it makes.   It is TRANSPARENT, but does not use transparency to destroy the rights of those whose views may be different.

Leadership is always accountable to a higher authority first.

Because of my Leadership skills, my service on County Council for the past 3 ½ years, has shown proven results, specifically in the following areas:

  • A Solvent Transportation Penny Roads Program
  • A Targeted Economic Development Plan that will ensure the creations of new jobs and industries coming to northeast Columbia
  • A strong new Tax Incentive Program that will encourage more new business development and growth in the county
  • Currently working to develop a plan for residential and commercial growth that benefits the community and will be supported by the businesses
  • Fully funding our public school’s local budget and supporting our teachers and students
  • Specific Enhancements that will improve the Quality of Life in District 9

I have successfully completed several of the above initiatives as a result of my positions on Council, which include: Chairman of the Penny Transportation Ad Hoc Committee, Chairman of the Economic Development Committee, Council Liaison to Richland Two District, and Leader of the Neighborhood Improvement Plan for District 9. I will remain Chairman of these committees, to ensure that all of the remaining initiatives are completed during my next term for my community.  Thanks for Your Support!


Jonnieka Farr

I believe that our government should serve the people.  The people of Richland County deserve leadership that is accountable.  At a time when Richland County is facing many challenges, we need leadership that is courageous and compassionate.  As leaders, we need to have the courage to do what is necessary even when it is not politically expedient.  Therefore, we can’t do politics as usual.  We need to be courageous and compassionate to make sure that no one in our community is left behind.

As a proud mother of two, I believed that it was always important to be involved in my children’s extracurricular affairs, be it classroom or team mom, PTO member, Orchestra Booster Club member or Church youth advisor. I have always believed in being of service and being of assistance where I could.  As my children grew older, my involvement broadened in the community.  I served as secretary and then chair of the Richland County Democratic Women’s Council. I assisted with my neighborhood homeowner’s association to being on the board of the association.  I now advocate for equity and increased diversity in our county as a board member of the Greater Columbia Community Relations Council. 

As my district began to face changes and challenges from within, I didn’t see the same commitment to being engaged within our community existing from current leadership.  There were several incidents where citizens’ safety was compromised and even lives lost. I attended community events seeking solutions to those problems and noticed that leadership for our district was not present.  It seemed that solving the problem in front of us was not a concern.  Therefore, I thought if we had leadership that was more engaged, listening to constituents, and standing side by side with them as solutions were sought together, our community would be better served. I saw we needed someone who would be accessible and attainable where citizens could reach out and have a more effective response.  Instead of continuing to wait for such leadership to appear, I decided to be the change that I was seeking. 

Our campaign’s platform focuses on small businesses, community and youth engagement, safety and our roads.   We understand the importance of small businesses within our community and the importance of encouraging citizens to be more engaged. We want to make sure that voices of Richland citizens are heard.  Most importantly, we will fight to ensure that the roads projects within our district are completed.

You can find more information about our “not politics as usual” campaign at www.jfarrforsc.com.  You can follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram @farrfor9.

It’s time for a different voice, a different choice.  Vote for Jonnieka Farr for District 9 for the June 9th primary.


Jerry Rega

I have been a resident of Northeast Richland County for twenty years and I am now a candidate for Richland County Council, District 9.

Although I’ve never held a political office, many people in Northeast Richland County know that I have been active in fighting for a better community. I am a strong advocate for controlled, well managed growth, rezoning that maintains a high quality of life and accountability of our political representatives.  My comments at town hall meetings or council meeting have always generated positive feedback.

While growth and change are inevitable, council members need to understand the balance between new development and quality of life. This is why conflicts have arisen between council and the northeast community. In addition, many criticisms have been targeted at county council regarding such matters as relieving an administrator at a cost of nearly $1 million, the increase in the constituent services budget from $1,500 to $19,000, and all of the problems surrounding the Penny Tax Program.

I grew up on the west side of Cleveland, Ohio in an area known as “Old Brooklyn.”   I learned early in life that hard work pays off. My father often held three jobs at once: maintenance worker, janitor and bartender. My mother cleaned offices to help with family finances. My Italian grandmother worked at the family restaurant in Pennsylvania into her 90’s. I had a paper route at the age of 12 and worked in various bowling alleys from the age of 14 and all through college. 

 I have twenty years of experience at Fortune 500 companies, starting as financial analyst and progressing to purchasing manager, product manager, then plant manager and general manager.

My wife, Eileen, and I started Regal Prints in 2002 and made Columbia our home.  Our four children graduated from Richland Two schools, the business has grown, added new employees and a second location in downtown Columbia. We’ve seen the local area grow tremendously with new homes and other small businesses. Unfortunately, the regional growth has been at the expense of crowded schools and congested traffic.

 I’ve served on the board of directors for the Windermere HOA, the Rice Creek Business Park POA and the Greater Blythewood Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors.

My formal education includes a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Economics from The College of Wooster and a Master’s degree in Business Administration with concentrations in Accounting and Finance from Case Western Reserve University.

Given my background with financial controls, financial management, starting and growing a small business, I feel extremely confident that I can help county council make the improvements needed to restore confidence in this governing body and help lead decisions that will improve the quality of life in Richland County.