Sebrell businessman running for supervisor

Published 10:17 am Friday, September 16, 2011

COURTLAND—A Sebrell businessman and farmer who is concerned about Southampton County’s $69 million debt and rising real estate taxes is running for the Board of Supervisors.

In his first bid for public office, independent Bruce Phillips, 62, is challenging two-term Democrat Moses Wyche, 69, for a four-year term in the Capron District. The job pays $5,500 annually.

The owner of Raccoon Creek Outfitters and Sunnyside Farms, Phillips’ primary concerns are the county’s debt and taxes. He is running because of the board’s “tax-and-spend attitude” and encouragement from friends.

Phillips favors the continued land-use ordinances in the county to control development.

“It makes it possible for county residents to continue to enjoy our rural lifestyle,” he said. “I love the county. I’m into farming and I grow timber, and I’m interested in maintaining the rural nature of Southampton County. We can’t stop growth. But we can control it and direct it in places we want it.”

Phillips also favors an open dialogue between the Southampton County School Board and supervisors on how to provide the quality education necessary in today’s demanding job market and difficult economic times.

He regularly attends supervisor and planning commission meetings and frequently speaks when he feels it’s necessary.

Phillips has served as president of Sebrell Civic Club and routinely assists with the group’s annual auction. Phillips also serves on the Farm Bureau Board of Directors, is a representative to the State Forestry and Natural Resource Committee for the Farm Bureau, a district representative to the Virginia Soybean Committee, a representative on the Executive Leadership Committee for the Extension in Southampton County and a member of the Franklin-Southampton Tourism Committee.

Phillips was instrumental in making Southampton County the leading county in Virginia with Century Farms.

He and his wife, Gayle, have been married for 12 years. He has a stepson, Will; daughter-in-law, Mindy; and grandson, Hayden.