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Caviness defeats Rosson in Knoxville municipal judge race

Nathan C. Fortner, Creative Commons

Tyler Caviness won the seat for Knoxville’s municipal judge in Tuesday’s election, defeating John Rosson, who had served in the role for over 30 years.

Caviness received 9,450 votes, or 61%. A total of 15,696 people voted in Tuesday's election.

Caviness said he wouldn't seek to hold the position for more than three terms.

“I think that term limits are healthy for a democracy, you know, allowing new people the chance to bring their unique backgrounds and perspectives into a public office,” he said in an interview. “That's just good, good democracy.”

He said he's planning some updates to the city court.

“Some of the easy changes that I want to hit the ground running and make is starting the court on time, not rushing people through, and making sure that we respect people’s time.”

Caviness also campaigned on updating the website and the accessibility of the city court. He said he wants the information to be readily available to the citizens who attend.

“Moving forward, I’m looking at improving the accessibility of the court, how people interact with the court, the transparency of the court, and how we make our functioning more open to people,”

In other races, Amelia Parker defeated Tim Hill for Seat C in the city council and Debbie Helsley defeated Bentley Marlow for Seat B.

Lynne Fugate ran unopposed in the race for Seat A and Charles Thomas ran unopposed for city council District 5.

(This story was co-produced with students from the University of Tennessee's Department of Journalism and Media.)

Jon came to WUOT in 2022 as the local host for NPR’s Morning Edition. He previously served as a producer, reporter, and on-air talent for several stations within the former Citadel Broadcasting group of Knoxville. Jon’s later pursuits in communications were found in the civil service branches to include Anderson County Emergency Services, The Federal Emergency Management Agency, and most recently with the U.S. State Department in Iraq.