Supporters gathered at Venue on the Square in Sherman Tuesday to greet the largest slate of Democrats up for local election in years.

The slate included nine candidates running for offices that range from local party chair to Congress.

Grayson County Republican Party Chair Barbara Woodroof did not return phone calls from the Herald Democrat seeking comment on the field of Democratic candidates.

Glen Melancon, chair of the Grayson County Democratic Party, introduced the candidates to the crowd and said it is great to see so many people interested in public service.

That group of new candidates included Lander Bethel and Catherine Krantz, who are both running for the Democratic nomination to face the Republican nomination for the U.S. Congressional seat in the 4th District currently held by Rep. John Ratcliffe.

In addition, it included Valerie Hefner who is running for the Democratic nomination to face the Republican nominee for the Texas House District 62 seat from which Larry Phillips is retiring. Republicans Reggie Smith, Brent Lawson and Kevin Couch have filed for that seat as well.

Also included in Tuesday’s roll out of Democrats were Karen Hughes Spencer who wants to face Grayson County Clerk Wilma Bush for her job, and Sylvia Faith Mitchell who wants to try to unseat Republican David Hawley for Justice of the Peace Precinct 2.

Laura Bass is attempting to unseat current Justice of the Peace in Precinct 3 Mike Reeves and Marilyn Livingston is trying to unseat Grayson County Commissioner David Whitlock. Terry Temple is trying unseat Grayson County Commissioner Bart Lawrence.

“I think its incredibly exciting that we have such a qualified slate of candidates,” Melancon said. He said that recent Democratic wins in states like Alabama and in Virginia are encouraging.

“Our public schools matter, our social security matters, Medicaid matters, our roads matter, our quality of life depends upon public institutions,” Melancon said.