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VOL. 124 | NO. 68 | Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Wrestling Promoter Preps For County Clerk Run

By Bill Dries

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Wrestling promoter and television personality Corey Maclin is the latest Democratic candidate to announce his intentions for the 2010 countywide elections.

Maclin on Monday told members of the local Democratic Executive Committee that he will be a candidate in the 2010 Democratic primary for Shelby County clerk.

Maclin, president and chief executive officer of Maclin & Associates Advertising and Promotions, said he had considered running in 2006 for the post held by Republican Debbie Stamson but passed on the race. Stamson beat Democratic nominee Otis Jackson by 478 votes in the 2006 general election. Jackson ran in 2008 for General Sessions Court clerk as the Democratic nominee and upset Republican incumbent Chris Turner.

Stamson disciplined two employees recently, fired a third and accepted the resignation of her chief administrative officer, Charles Nichols, following a report from the Shelby County Attorney’s office that concluded all four had accepted or knew of tips that some citizens paid the clerk’s office. That included gratuities from two car dealerships for bending the rules on car titles. The report is being reviewed by the District Attorney General’s office.

Maclin said the investigation was not a factor in his decision to run.

“Not really. I initially made my mind up August of last year,” Maclin told The Daily News. “I think she’s handled it very well. … Some things are beyond your control. But there’s got to be some accountability. I think she has done that.”

In the ring

Maclin was born in Millington and lives in Lakeland. He promotes professional wrestling in a market and city that once was one of the best local venues for the mix of sport and entertainment. Promoters using cable and pay television matches as well as contracts governing where their wrestlers could appear took professional wrestling to a national audience starting in the mid-1980s at the expense of the regional markets.

Maclin mixed wrestling and politics on one memorable occasion. A 2004 match at the Mid-South Coliseum featured a ring appearance by four members of the Ford family, including Shelby County Board of Commissioners member Joe Ford and then-state Sen. John Ford, as well as Isaac and Jake Ford, the sons of former U.S. Rep. Harold Ford Sr.

The Fords took to the ring as professional wrestler and 1999 Memphis mayoral candidate Jerry Lawler taunted Joe Ford for costing him the mayor’s race. Ford was also a candidate for mayor that year.

Help from friends

Monday’s meeting was the first of the new Democratic executive committee since it was elected at a county convention earlier this month and chose attorney Van Turner Jr. as the new party chairman. The group followed up by electing attorney Desi Franklin, who was instrumental in Turner’s victory over rival Jay Bailey, as first vice chair of the party. Cherry Davis, who had been first vice chair, was elected second vice chair.

The only contested selection was for party secretary. Reginald Milton, another Turner ally, was the committee’s pick over Del Gill, a Bailey ally. Barbara Williams was reappointed party treasurer by Turner.

PROPERTY SALES 50 389 12,758
MORTGAGES 21 248 8,003
BUILDING PERMITS 295 813 29,934
BANKRUPTCIES 35 164 6,064