CHARLESTON, WV (LOOTPRESS) – Evidently party bylaws do trump state law. At least in the mind of Governor Jim Justice.
Today, Justice appointed Joshua Booth of Kenova to the West Virginia House of Delegates, representing the 19th District. The district covers part of Wayne County.
Booth fills the vacancy created by the resignation of Derrick Evans earlier this month and will serve the remainder of the unexpired term until 2022.
“I feel very, very confident that Joshua Booth will do a wonderful job for the people of West Virginia,” Gov. Justice said upon announcing the appointment today.
Not included in the governor’s announcement was any reference to the controversy created by the appointment.
Wayne County Republican Chair Jeff Maynard enlisted members of the county committee who live in the 19th Delegate District to choose three possible replacements for Evans. Those names were received by Justice on January 14.
But Acting State GOP Chair Roman Stauffer ignored the county committee and scheduled interviews for the job himself. Included in that recommendation, made January 21, )were just two Wayne committee members. The original list provided by the 19th District committee included Mark Ross, Chad Shaffer and Jay Marcum.
When news of the three names reached most Wayne Countians, rumors circulated that State Senator Mark Maynard was unhappy with the choices. He was said to favor Booth, who.was not on the list.
Many believe that’s why Stauffer insisted on a do-over. Booth made the second list but Marcum did not.
An attorney for Chair Maynard filed for a Writ of Mandamus Monday to try to force the governor to make his appointment from the first list. Clearly, he did not.
Booth is Vice President of Highway Safety Inc., a traffic safety control, signage, and striping construction firm in Huntington.
A native of Kenova, Booth graduated from Ceredo-Kenova High School in 1998, serving as Class President. He went on to graduate from Marshall University with a degree in Business Administration.
Booth is active in Wayne County youth sports. He has served on the Board of Directors and coached in the Vinson Youth Football League. He has also coached at Vinson Little League Baseball for 10 years, and has volunteered at Spring Valley High School with the football team’s off season conditioning.
Booth is a member of Crosspoint Community Church in Westmorland and a member of Kenova Masonic Lodge #110.
The new delegate has served as a Member-at-Large on the Board of Directors for the Contractors Association of West Virginia. He previously served as Chairman of the association’s Young Contractors Forum from 2015 to 2018, during which time he provided guidance and knowledge to future leaders of West Virginia’s construction industry.
Booth lives in Kenova with his wife, Stacy. They have two sons.