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POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: Zellner returns to Gwinnett elections board

Camie Young

Camie Young

A beloved elections advocate will return to the Gwinnett County Board of Registration and Elections.

Joan Zellner, of Buford, was recently named back to the board, where she served from 1992 to 2008, including numerous terms as chairwoman.

Zellner replaced Debbie Dooley as a representative of the Republican Party (the board is comprised of two representatives each from the local Republican and Democratic parties as well as one independent). Dooley, who has organized numerous town hall meetings and protests during the past year, resigned because of her responsibilities as a national leader of the Tea Party Patriot organization, GOP Chairman Chuck Efstration said in an e-mail.

"Joan is extremely respected in the community and a well known resource on election issues," Efstration wrote. "I know she will do an excellent job in service to Gwinnett County as a member of the Board of Registration & Elections."

Mattingly backs

Hudgens for insurance commissioner

Barrow County's state senator has a big ally in his race for insurance and safety fire commissioner.

Former U.S. Sen. and Ambassador Mack Mattingly has joined Ralph Hudgen's campaign.

He will co-chair the 2010 campaign to replace Duluth's John Oxendine and insurance commissioner. Oxendine is leaving the post to run for government.

"I am very excited about Ralph's campaign and I am honored to serve as one of his co-chairs," Mattingly said. "Ralph and his wife Suzanne have worked tirelessly in the trenches building the Georgia Republican Party for over 30 years. Ralph's message of recruiting more insurance jobs to Georgia, eliminating unnecessary regulations and bringing transparency to our health care system, is one that will resonate with Republicans, Democrats and independents alike."

Mattingly was the first Republican to represent Georgia in the U.S. Senate since Reconstruction. He held that office from 1981 to 1987, and was appointed by President George H.W. Bush in 1992 as ambassador to the Republic of the Seychelles.

"Mack's experience, knowledge and counsel will be immeasurable assets to my campaign," said Hudgens, a Republican from Hull, whose 47th district encompasses Barrow.

Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Camie Young can be reached via e-mail at camie.young@gwinnettdailypost.com.