Dunnavant seeks board seat

Published 11:44 am Tuesday, October 20, 2015

E. Morgan Dunnavant has announced his candidacy for the District Four seat on the Buckingham County Board of Supervisors.

Dunnavant, a Republican, is challenging incumbent candidate John N. Staton, an independent.

“My parents, grandparents and theirs before them were all Buckingham County residents. In fact, my residence and farm is what’s left intact of an original land grant from the Virginia Company in the early 1600s,” he said in a statement.

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“Now that I’m semi-retired and I believe to be financially secure, I am in a position to give back to the community that has done so much for me, or shall I say, enabled me to make my accomplishments,” Dunnavant said.

He said that Staton, the incumbent, is “a retired telephone company

employee with no business experience whatsoever. Myself on the other hand, [I] am a very successful businessman who is exceedingly well-versed in contracts, management of [personnel], resources and finances. I have always had a position that has had direct contact with the public,” he said.

While working for the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT), Dunnavant said he worked with boards of supervisors in Buckingham, Cumberland and Prince Edward counties, in addition to the Town of Farmville.

“My contracting experience has given me vast exposure to elements that go into decisions that are asked of board members and the pitfalls that are lurking in the details,” he said.

Dunnavant said that Buckingham will face many challenges yet to be known “along with the day-to-day necessities of the operation of the county. “Wouldn’t these decisions best be made with the due diligence, insight and experience of a successful business mindset as opposed to what we have now?,” he questioned.

The 1982 Buckingham County High School graduate, who attended Piedmont Virginia Community College, said he’s had an entrepreneurial enterprise in operation since he was 14 years old.

“In 1983, I got a ‘real job’ at Buckingham Correctional Center and shortly thereafter transferred to VDOT as a construction inspector where I quickly moved up into an office position issuing and inspecting permits, setting up contracts and acquiring right-of-way. By 1998 my farm-grown landscaping enterprise has grown to the point that I didn’t have time to continue working at VDOT,” he said.

He then devoted his time and energy to Dunnavant Excavating and Grading, what he calls one of the greatest startup businesses in Central Virginia.

“At its height, I had 27 employees divided into five work crews on three to four multi-million dollar contracts simultaneously from 2004–2010.”

Dunnavant said that one of his passions is involvement with youth in the Experimental Aircraft Association.

The election is Nov. 3.