69.2 F
Saturday, May 27, 2023
HomeIllinois NewsCarson delegates reflect new, energized conservative ranks in Illinois

Carson delegates reflect new, energized conservative ranks in Illinois



Carson visited Precision Signz in Bettendorf IA Thursday – Photo credit Christie Schilling

SPRINGFIELD – Dr. Ben Carson, the soft-spoken pediatric surgeon that is making waves among the Republican ranks, filed his presidential primary candidate petitions at 5:00 PM Wednesday along with a full slate of delegates and alternates. 

While many of the names are new on ballots, the energy of the statewide group will make them formidable March 15th. Dr. Carson has attracted support statewide, although his visits to the state thus far have been rare. 

Carson 2016 delegates Brian Jack, Ryan Newman, Stephanie Holderfield, Karaina Callahan and Elizabeth Olgesby at ISBE

"It is an honor and privilege to see the efforts, persistence, dedication and enthusiasm from a stellar group of delegates, alternate delegates and volunteers that came together to form a strong team," Stephanie Holderfield, Carson's campaign Illinois director told Illinois Review.

"Our leadership team in Illinois is comprised of elected officials, Republican State Central Committeeman, evangelicals and pastors and grassroots leaders, who are committed to Dr. Ben Carson for President."

The campaign's Co-Chairmen are State Rep. Reggie Phillips (110th District) and State Central Committeeman Stanton Bond (14th Congressional District).
"The co-chairs have helped to lead our strong 100% grassroots efforts in Illinois; I am grateful for the opportunity to work with them as we move forward with the campaign," Holderfield said.
Others on the Carson delegate list are Tazewell County State's Attorney Stewart Umholtz, former State Rep. Jim Sacia, former IL GOP Executive Director John Tsarpalas and Monee Police Commission Board member George Pearson.
George Pearson told Illinois Review he's supporting Carson, "…because of his inspirational story that says, 'Yes, you can make it if you put forth a serious effort!'
"It is my opinion that Dr. Carson's ascendancy is rooted in the true American dream and exemplifies the Navy motto of Honor, Courage and Commitment," Pearson said. "Even though he was a young man that grew up in poverty, they were wealthy with the love and support of a caring, but firm mother. Dr. Carson corrected his moral compass, took the bull by the horns, obtained an education, created his own path. He is a trailblazer."
Carson delegates2
Carson delegates George Pearson and his wife Dezaree with Stephanie Holderfield 
Ceasar LeFlore, who's running as a delegate in the 2nd Congressional District, said he's supporting Carson mostly because of his stance on social issues. 
"It's primarily because of his stance on the social issues. Actually, I call them the 'righteousness issues of society,' and I believe that they have more to do with the health and welfare of our nation than almost anything else.
"Dr. Carson is pro-life, which is vitally important to me. He also understands that the family, as God has established, are the building blocks of a great society," LeFlore said. "He is for the protection of the traditional family. Also his stance on taxes is that everyone should contribute…not in equal amounts, but with equal sacrifice. I love some of his ideas concerning a flat tax.
'Finally, he is a problem solver and uses wisdom and common sense, coupled with integrity and faith as he approaches finding solutions to problems. I've been a supporter since I met him five years ago at the Coalition for Urban Renewal and Education (CURE) conference in Washington DC."
Laura Leuder-Santowski is running for Carson in the 8th CD. She was first attracted to Dr. Carson reading his book "Gifted Hands," and then when he spoke at the February 2013 National Prayer Breakfast. She's seen him in person on several occasions in the past few years.
"In September 2014, I had the honor to hear Ben Carson speak at the Salvation Army. That same day he took the time to meet 300 high school students, when he gave them all autographed books and told them they could accomplish anything in life to which they set their minds," Santownski told Illinois Review. "On May 4th, of 2015 was thrilled to be in attendance in Detroit to listen to Dr. Carson announce his candidacy for President. 
"Along this journey, the common element I have found is the passion Carson supporters express and ultimately believing each and every one of us can make a difference by getting involved and that’s truly why I became an alternate delegate and will continue to promote a  man of integrity, intelligence, character, and conservative values."
Carson held second place to Donald Trump for several months before his polls plunged in late 2015. Since then, Carson has revamped his campaign leadership and breathed new life into his campaign. He's raised a respectable amount of money, and his campaign says he's hoping to fare well in Iowa on February 1st.
Screen Shot 2016-01-08 at 2.55.11 PM
Screen Shot 2016-01-08 at 2.55.33 PM
*       10  Michelle Parnell                               X
Screen Shot 2016-01-08 at 2.55.52 PM
Screen Shot 2016-01-08 at 2.56.16 PM


- Never miss a story with notifications

- Gain full access to our premium content

- Browse free from up to 5 devices at once

Latest stories


  1. So proud to have been a part of getting that list of patriots on the ballot for the Illinois Primary! Thanks Stephanie Holderfield and the rest of the Illinois Carson for President Team for your leadership and for letting me be a part. Ready for the next challenge! WIN BEN WIN!