By prior agreement to appoint the Democratic primary winner (there being no Republican candidate), the Shelby County Commission will designate Parkinson as the interim successor to the late Ulysses Jones at the commission’s regular Monday meeting. Parkinson, who will hit the ground running when the legislature, now in recess, reconvenes on February 7, is destined to be formally elected in the special general election on March 8.
Bad weather and what has become a pattern of low turnout for special elections kept the primary vote low. Complete results from all 15 precincts showed Parkinson with 353 votes, Stephanie Gatewood with 143, Brenda Oats-Williams with 110 and Jannie Foster with 18.
Ex-Marine Parkinson is a firefighter like his predecessor and is a member of the North Memphis Roundtable, an activist group which has included numerous influential figures on the Memphis political scene, including the late Rep. Jones.