Madera County June primary focus will be on DA, sheriff races

The Fresno BeeMarch 7, 2014 

Madera County has a competitive district attorney's contest that could get heated.

Incumbent District Attorney Michael Keitz is being challenged by Oakhurst attorney David Linn and Deputy Madera County Counsel Miranda Neal.

The field was confirmed Friday, the last day to file for a spot on the June 3 primary election ballot in races with an incumbent.

The other hot race is the one to replace Sheriff John Anderson, who took office in January 1999.

Six people are seeking to replace him. They are Chowchilla Police Chief Jay Varney, Madera County Undersheriff Michael Salvador, retired California Highway Patrol Sgt. Dennis Fairbanks, former Madera Police Chief Michael Kime, Fresno Police Sgt. Greg Noll and former Madera County Sheriff's Sgt. Frank Gauthier, who is now a corporate security manager.

Another race is for District 1 on the Madera County Board of Supervisors, where Manuel Nevarez -- who was appointed to the seat by Gov. Jerry Brown after former Supervisor Frank Bigelow won election to the state Assembly -- is not seeking re-election.

There are seven possible candidates seeking to replace him.

They are winegrower/businessman Ray Krause Jr., business owner Brett Frazier, John Silva, Jonathan Echols, businessman Gary Johns, business owner Rochelle Minneti Noblett and marketing director Mona Diaz.

Incumbent Supervisor Tom Wheeler in District 5 also drew a challenger -- firefighter/teacher Paul Cliby.

The reporter can be reached at (559) 441-6320, jellis@fresnobee.com or @johnellis24 on Twitter.

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