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Scott Witten

Position: Editor
E-Mail Address: switten@civitasmedia.com
Phone Number: 910-865-4179, 910-843-4631

Latest Stories by Scott Witten

RED SPRINGS — Authorities think an arsonist may have started a fire that destroyed the old gymnasium at Highlander Academy, formerly Flora Macdonald Academy.
The fire began around 2 a.m. Thursday. It took firefighters from the Red Springs and Shannon fire departments about two hours to put out the blaze. The free-standing building sat about

Fire guts historic gym

RED SPRINGS — Authorities think an arsonist may have started a fire that destroyed the old gymnasium at Highlander Academy, formerly Flora Macdonald Academy. The fire began around 2 a.m. Thursday. It took firefighters from the Red Springs and Shannon fire departments about two hours to put out the blaze. The free-standing building sat about

LAURINBURG — The effort to connect Laurinburg to Tema, Ghana in a Sister City Initiative has earned the seal of approval from Laurinburg's city leaders, and the committee behind the union is planning an exchange of goods between the two cities.
The steering committee, in meetings over the past three months, is planning a “dual economic

Laurinburg-Tema link gets city's stamp

LAURINBURG — The effort to connect Laurinburg to Tema, Ghana in a Sister City Initiative has earned the seal of approval from Laurinburg's city leaders, and the committee behind the union is planning an exchange of goods between the two cities. The steering committee, in meetings over the past three months, is planning a “dual economic

RED SPRINGS — Steve Hagen, the new headmaster of Highlander Academy, went before the town board last week to introduce himself.
But introductions were unnecessary.
Hagen, a Red Springs native, greeted each commissioner by name and reminisced about his ties to every member of the board.
“I'm so proud to be back in Red Springs,”

RED SPRINGS — Steve Hagen, the new headmaster of Highlander Academy, went before the town board last week to introduce himself. But introductions were unnecessary. Hagen, a Red Springs native, greeted each commissioner by name and reminisced about his ties to every member of the board. “I'm so proud to be back in Red Springs,”

LUMBERTON — After two years of leading Robeson County Democrats, John McNeill handed over the reins on Saturday.
But the gavel didn't travel far — at least geographically.
McNeill, who also serves as mayor of Red Springs, will be followed as party chairman by fellow Red Springs Commissioner Edward “Chub” Henderson.
Lumber

Henderson follows McNeill as party chair

LUMBERTON — After two years of leading Robeson County Democrats, John McNeill handed over the reins on Saturday. But the gavel didn't travel far — at least geographically. McNeill, who also serves as mayor of Red Springs, will be followed as party chairman by fellow Red Springs Commissioner Edward “Chub” Henderson. Lumber

ST. PAULS —Matthew King attributes the success of his 2,500-acre farm operation to hard work and prayer.
It is a formula that has sustained the St. Pauls farming family for seven generations.
But county agriculture officials, who recently honored him as the 2014 Young Farmer of the Year, say King is also successful because of his willingnes

St. Pauls grower named Young Farmer of the year

ST. PAULS —Matthew King attributes the success of his 2,500-acre farm operation to hard work and prayer. It is a formula that has sustained the St. Pauls farming family for seven generations. But county agriculture officials, who recently honored him as the 2014 Young Farmer of the Year, say King is also successful because of his willingnes

PEMBROKE — Longtime Pembroke Mayor Milton Hunt died Wednesday after a long struggle with complications stemming from heart surgery. He was 71 years old.
“There's a saying in Africa that when an elder dies, you lose a history book,” said Gary Locklear, the town's attorney. “And Pembroke has certainly lost more than a history

Pembroke mayor succumbs to illness

PEMBROKE — Longtime Pembroke Mayor Milton Hunt died Wednesday after a long struggle with complications stemming from heart surgery. He was 71 years old. “There's a saying in Africa that when an elder dies, you lose a history book,” said Gary Locklear, the town's attorney. “And Pembroke has certainly lost more than a history

ST. PAULS — The St. Pauls Board of Commissioners voted on Thursday night to approve an incentives package of tax breaks for Sanderson Farms in exchange for jobs and investments.
Under the incentive plan, the poultry giant has agreed to create at least 950 full-time jobs within 36 months of the start of the plant's operation. Sanderson has to

St. Pauls gives final approval to incentives deal

ST. PAULS — The St. Pauls Board of Commissioners voted on Thursday night to approve an incentives package of tax breaks for Sanderson Farms in exchange for jobs and investments. Under the incentive plan, the poultry giant has agreed to create at least 950 full-time jobs within 36 months of the start of the plant's operation. Sanderson has to

RED SPRINGS — State lawmakers congratulated each other for the recent passage of a bill that could lead to lower electric rates across Southeastern North Carolina as early as late summer, but utility users in 32 towns and cities may have someone in Red Springs to thank as well.
Renet McQueen has toiled for years to get local and state offici

Towns anxious for reduction in electrical rates

RED SPRINGS — State lawmakers congratulated each other for the recent passage of a bill that could lead to lower electric rates across Southeastern North Carolina as early as late summer, but utility users in 32 towns and cities may have someone in Red Springs to thank as well. Renet McQueen has toiled for years to get local and state offici

RED SPRINGS — Caroline Sumpter has spent years as a volunteer trying to help her native Red Springs grow.
Now she will be paid for those efforts.
Sumpter has been named the new executive director of the Red Springs Chamber of Commerce. The chamber has been without an executive director since Linda Mack left the post late last year.
“

Sumpter to head chamber office

RED SPRINGS — Caroline Sumpter has spent years as a volunteer trying to help her native Red Springs grow. Now she will be paid for those efforts. Sumpter has been named the new executive director of the Red Springs Chamber of Commerce. The chamber has been without an executive director since Linda Mack left the post late last year. “

RED SPRINGS — A new pet grooming service has opened in Red Springs offering everything from traditional clippings to facials and hot oil treatments.
The Posh Paws Pet Spa is owned and operated by Amber Saladine.
“I became a groomer because my two biggest passions in life are animals and art, grooming allows me to express my creativity

Pet groomer to offer salon services

RED SPRINGS — A new pet grooming service has opened in Red Springs offering everything from traditional clippings to facials and hot oil treatments. The Posh Paws Pet Spa is owned and operated by Amber Saladine. “I became a groomer because my two biggest passions in life are animals and art, grooming allows me to express my creativity

RED SPRINGS — The new headmaster of Highlander Academy says he wants his school and his students to strive toward excellence — a quality that made Red Springs an educational “powerhouse” when he was a boy.
Steve Hagen, a former principal at Hoke County High School, began as headmaster on March 2.
“I'm so proud to be

Headmaster shares academy's plan with Red Springs board

RED SPRINGS — The new headmaster of Highlander Academy says he wants his school and his students to strive toward excellence — a quality that made Red Springs an educational “powerhouse” when he was a boy. Steve Hagen, a former principal at Hoke County High School, began as headmaster on March 2. “I'm so proud to be

Workshop to focus on tenant-landlord rights

RED SPRINGS — There will be a free legal workshop Saturday focused on landlord-tenant rights. The workshop is sponsored by Peterkin Law Firm. The law firm is working with the Red Springs Small Towns Economic Prosperity Committee to sponsor the Legal Empowerment Series that runs through Saturday. The workshop will be held at the Red Springs

ST. PAULS — The young chickens in Angela Shaver's animal science II class are not much to look at as they trade their cute fur for feathers.
The resulting bald patches make the three-week-old chicks look wet and sickly even though they are healthy and getting stronger by the day.
To Halie Hunt, a student in the class, the birds are beautifu

Students schooled on poultry production

ST. PAULS — The young chickens in Angela Shaver's animal science II class are not much to look at as they trade their cute fur for feathers. The resulting bald patches make the three-week-old chicks look wet and sickly even though they are healthy and getting stronger by the day. To Halie Hunt, a student in the class, the birds are beautifu

Rand Paul said on Tuesday that he plans to run for president.
Armed with the slogan: “Defeat the Washington machine. Unleash the American dream,” Paul plans to kick off his campaign for the White House with a five-state tour to Kentucky, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Iowa and Nevada.
We hope he has a good constitution. And we don't m

New media gives hail to the chief

Rand Paul said on Tuesday that he plans to run for president. Armed with the slogan: “Defeat the Washington machine. Unleash the American dream,” Paul plans to kick off his campaign for the White House with a five-state tour to Kentucky, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Iowa and Nevada. We hope he has a good constitution. And we don't m

ST. PAULS — Jesus Christ's battered march to Calvary will be reenacted in the streets of St. Pauls today as part of the town's annual Community Good Friday Service.
In commemoration of the day Christ was crucified, a large cross will be carried from St. Pauls Elementary School with a procession of Christians trailing closely behind. The serv

Cross makes trip through St. Pauls

ST. PAULS — Jesus Christ's battered march to Calvary will be reenacted in the streets of St. Pauls today as part of the town's annual Community Good Friday Service. In commemoration of the day Christ was crucified, a large cross will be carried from St. Pauls Elementary School with a procession of Christians trailing closely behind. The serv

ST. PAULS — The committee for the St. Pauls Small Town Economic Prosperity — or STEP — initiative has agreed to shift money from other recreational projects to help pay for the installation of two scoreboards at the ballpark off Lafayette Street.
The Robeson County Parks and Recreation Department installed the signs late last yea

STEP to look for money to ballpark scoreboards

ST. PAULS — The committee for the St. Pauls Small Town Economic Prosperity — or STEP — initiative has agreed to shift money from other recreational projects to help pay for the installation of two scoreboards at the ballpark off Lafayette Street. The Robeson County Parks and Recreation Department installed the signs late last yea

St. Pauls to observe Good Friday with event

ST. PAULS — This year's Community Good Friday Service will take to the streets of St. Pauls. The Rev. Sue Hudson of St. Pauls Presbyterian Church, who has helped organize the program since 2010, said the service will include carrying a large Christian cross to various churches around town to mark Good Friday, the day Christians commemorate t

Red Springs to consider body cameras for police

PEMBROKE —Mayor John McNeill said he knows first-hand how important cameras can be in helping protect the police and the public. McNeill, who is urging the town to consider body cameras for town officers, said a newly installed camera on a patrol car several years ago helped relieve tension following a car chase involving Police Chief Ronnie

PEMBROKE — Red Springs town commissioners used part of this weekend's board retreat to discuss how outfitting police with body cameras could benefit officers and the public.
The commissioners also used the two-day retreat to talk about budget priorities, the past year's accomplishments and new objectives for the coming year. The retreat was

Red Springs talks police cameras during retreat

PEMBROKE — Red Springs town commissioners used part of this weekend's board retreat to discuss how outfitting police with body cameras could benefit officers and the public. The commissioners also used the two-day retreat to talk about budget priorities, the past year's accomplishments and new objectives for the coming year. The retreat was

Historic Robeson County academy gets a new name

RED SPRINGS — Flora Macdonald Academy has changed its name to Highlander Academy. Headmaster Steve Hagen said Thursday the change will help the school disassociate from the financial problems of the previous board that ran the school. The operation of the school was taken over earlier this year by a new board called the Legacy Foundation. T





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