Nancy Bumgardner Costner can’t help if she’s biased in the race for Blount County Circuit Court judge. Blount County General Sessions Judge David Duggan is her cousin.
She said she is very proud of Duggan, a Republican who is running for the Circuit Court judgeship currently held by Judge Mike Meares, a Democrat who is also running for the position.
“I’m very biased. David has always meant a lot to our family,” she said. “He is who Blount County should have to represent them.”
Costner and more than 200 other friends and supporters of Duggan’s gathered at the home of Bob and Dottie Kidd in St. Ives recently for a reception and fund-raiser for the judge.
Duggan and his wife, Kari, chatted with friends and enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere. “It’s always very humbling to see people turn out for your benefit,” Duggan said. “I’m very grateful for all my friends and supporters. I’ve even got a few teachers here.”
Duggan said there were friends of his from throughout the community at the reception.
“We’ve got one former teacher from Alcoa High School and folks I go to church with and folks I go to Kiwanis with,” he said.
Friends and neighbors shared their thoughts on Duggan and why they support his candidacy.
“A lot of people care about David,” Judy Dunlap said. “He is sincere.”
Peggy Lambert, who was recently elected to be Tennessee’s committeewoman to the National Republican Party, said it was very important that Duggan win the seat. “He’s got the demeanor, the professionalism, and he has respect for people,” she said. “Everyone is treated equally in his courtroom.”
Bob Kidd said Duggan is very well-known in the community. “He’s a very deserving member of our community, and he’s a very sophisticated man,” Kidd said.
Kidd, a former Blount County commissioner, said Duggan was very ethical and above board. “I had the honor of nominating him when a new General Sessions Court judgeship was created,” he said. “David is as well known in this area as anyone I’ve ever known. His integrity is above reproach. I know that the judgeship would be in the best of hands.”
Sam Burns said Duggan is someone people can turn to and know where he’s coming from on any issue.
Dave Bennett, Blount County Republican party chair, said Duggan is the right man for the job of Circuit Court judge. The Blount County G.O.P. leader said Duggan has overwhelming support from the community. “It’s heart-warming to see people support him because he’s the right man for the judgeship,” Bennett said.
“He has the experience, qualifications and, most importantly, he has the character and moral fiber you need in a judge. He is solid as a rock,” Bennett said.