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FMU hosts mayoral debate on campus


FLORENCE – Francis Marion University will be hosting a mayoral debate featuring incumbent Frank Willis and challenger Stephen J. Wukela on Tuesday, June 3, at 7 p.m., in the Chapman Auditorium on the university campus.

The Florence Mayoral Debate sponsored by Francis Marion University, the Morning News, League of Women Voters, Responsible Economic Development and the Sierra Club, will be moderated by FMU President Fred Carter.

Panelists Brenda Harrison, editor of the Florence County News Journal; WBTW’s Bob Juback; Harry Logan, regional editor of the Morning News; and Larry Smith, owner and publisher of the Community Times will participate in the debate.  

Harrison has been with The News Journal since 1988. She oversees the editorial content of the paper, writing and editing articles, in addition to the layout. She “grew up" in the newspaper business, starting at age 16 with her first job as news librarian at the Morning News. A Florence native, Harrison is a 1969 graduate of McClenaghan High School.  

She serves on the boards of the Florence Little Theatre and New Life Rescue Ministries. Harrison is also a member of the Art's Alive Committee, and the publicity committee for United Way. She is an active member of First Baptist Church. 

Juback is co-anchor of News 13 at 6 and 11 p.m. Prior to assuming the News Anchor role in 1992, he worked on the sports side of the desk at WYFF in Greenville; WSPA in Spartanburg; and at WBTW from 1984-1987. Before that, Bob worked at radio stations in Greenville, Spartanburg and Columbia.

He grew up in Annapolis, Md., and graduated from the University of South Carolina. Juback, his wife and their two children live in Murrells Inlet.

Logan, editor of the Morning News, is the regional editor of Media General’s daily and weekly publications in eastern South Carolina. He was recently elected president for dailies of the South Carolina Press Association (SCPA). Logan is a 1970 graduate of the College of Journalism at USC. He has previously served on the board of SCPA, been past president of the South Carolina Associated Press News Council and currently serves on the SCPA Foundation Board as well as USC’s College of Mass Communications and Information Studies Partnership Board.

He began his newspaper career in 1970 as a reporter at The Columbia Record and moved up to city editor before becoming assistant managing editor of The State newspaper in 1980. Logan served as deputy managing editor of The State prior to coming to Florence in 2001.

Smith, who has been a business owner for 21 years, is co-owner of DBS Communications conglomerate, which he owns with his wife of 25 years, Diana Brunson Smith. These subsidiaries, in addition to The Community Times, which has a circulation in 11 Eastern South Carolina (Pee Dee and Coastal) counties, include: The Times Upstate (serving seven counties in South Carolina’s Piedmont region); Eastern South Carolina BlackBook, an annual directory listing African-American-owned businesses; and First Friday of the Pee Dee, a monthly networking opportunity for African-American businesses and professionals. 

Smith, originally from Columbia, is a 1979 graduate of Benedict College, with a bachelor’s degree in sociology.

Live coverage of the debate will be provided on Time Warner Cable Channel 11 and on WBTW’s MyTV on Time Warner’s Digital Channel 811. Live video streaming coverage of the debate will be provided on WBTW’s website at

Francis Marion University, founded in 1970, is one of South Carolina's 13 state-supported universities. As one of the state's six comprehensive institutions, FMU prides itself on providing a strong liberal arts education.

#196 / 5-30-08

Last Published: June 2, 2008 9:38 AM
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