Questions surround congressional candidacy

By Marty Gordon

A Christiansburg man says he is running for the Ninth Congressional seat against Republican Morgan Griffith in the next election cycle, but questions are swirling around the announcement, which was supposed to take place Thursday night.

Cameron D. Dickerson has labeled himself a Democrat and told reporters earlier in the day the official announcement would take place at a Montgomery County Democratic meeting Thursday night. But the local political party does not know him or recognize him as a Democrat.

Montgomery County Party Chairperson Jeni Gallagher said Dickerson had corresponded with her briefly by email. Officially, the Democratic group told him he was not welcome at their gathering in the county social services building on Thursday and had gone as far to say he would be charged with trespassing if he did show up.

Two Christiansburg police officers stood in the lobby in case there were any problems. Dickerson did not show up and did not return media inquiries as of late Thursday.

Several Roanoke television stations earlier in the week ran stories of his announced intentions to challenge Griffith. Gallagher said the Montgomery County Democrat Party believes he has filed as an Independent.

Dickerson’s resume reads like an intelligence experts dream with work in Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia, Turkey and Russia. He says he is currently the executive director of Intelligence Advanced Analytics, a self-described private intelligence think-tank, and chairman of the federal political action committee Progressive National Committee.

The same resume states he works for the Ninth Congressional Democrat Party. The chairman of the Ninth District Democrat group, Gary Hancock of Pulaski, has said the local group has no full-time staffers, and there has yet to be a call to convention by Democrats.

Dickerson also cited experience as a volunteer football coach for club teams at Radford and Tusculum universities. The resume said he was recognized as the 2014 Southern Collegiate Club Federation of America (SCCFA) coach of the year while he was at Tusculum.

The resume says he worked for the Appalachian Regional Coalition for the Homelessness in Johnson City, Tenn., from 2008 to 2015 and is a 2007 graduate of Christiansburg High School.

No other person has announced plans for the Democratic nomination, but Dickerson said the district must return to the Rick Boucher (former Democrat Congressman) way of doing things, which means service, technology and education.

Dickerson told television stations, he would be introducing a new aerospace, energy and defense company in February aimed at creating jobs in Southwest Virginia and promoting technical trade education in Virginia’s Community College System. He did not return messages to confirm or deny the plans.

Meanwhile, Dickerson is listed in a civil suit against General District Judge Randal Duncan, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s office and the Montgomery County Commonwealth’s Attorney office.  That suit filed in U.S. District Court also lists the Republican National Party as one of the defendants. The details in the case are not known at this time.

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