Brown Patterson had been active behind the scenes in local politics for some time, watching and absorbing the issues facing Laurens County. Soon, he will have a chance to put that information to use.
On Tuesday, Patterson won the Republican Primary election for the District 4 seat on Laurens County Council, defeating Jennifer Garrett in a landslide with nearly 75% of the vote. With no Democratic
Patterson finished with 494 votes and Garrett with 190.
“It was just getting out and meeting the voters,” Patterson said of the victory. “Taking an intentional direct approach to speak with the voters and press the flesh.”
With no Democratic challenger for the special election, Patterson will be the presumptive winner of the Sept. 10 election.
Garrett carried several small precincts, but that did not translate into votes for the political newcomer. She carried Hickory Tavern by a 21-9 margin, but Patterson scored with relatively large numbers in Laurens 5 (111-39), Laurens 6 (74-22) and among absentee voters (89-22).
“I’m super grateful to all of my supporters and all those that came out to vote today,” Garrett said after the final tally. “Now, I just really want to stand behind Mr. Patterson now and wish him the best. I know he’s going to come through for the county.”
Barring a successful write-in campaign, Patterson will fill the seat vacated by Stewart Jones when Jones was elected to the state House of Representatives, said the time he spent as an observer paid dividends during the campaign.
“There’s a reason God gave us two ears and one mouth for a reason,” he said. “Being able to watch for so long from the outside has given me insight into the direction I want to go.”
Despite his political aspirations, Patterson said the decision to enter the political fray was not one he took lightly.
“It was scary to be honest,” he said. “I’d stayed behind the scenes and watched and given my opinion when I saw fit, but taking the initiative to step out front and put my name on the ballot was a big step – lots of prayer and conversations with family about what that entails. A lot of thought went into it.”
Patterson has regularly attended county council meetings during and prior to the campaign, but he won’t be sworn in to represent District 4 until after the scheduled special election in September.
“I hope to be extremely proactive with this council to get stuff done,” he said. “That’s why I ran. I want to move this county into the future.”