By | February 11, 2020

Shortly after former District Court Judge Randy Pool retired last year, the District 41 bar (McDowell & Rutherford County attorneys) met to nominate candidates for gubernatorial appointment replace ment. As verified in nominee Anna Kegley’s Facebook post of December 20, 2019, the nominees were:

  • Joshua Howell,
  • Michelle McEntire,
  • Krinn Evans,
  • Alicia Vega,
  • and Anna Kegley.

Kegley’s Facebook post.
Yesterday, the 29A District Bar met to vote five nominees to send to the Governor for consideration in filling the vacancy left by retired judge Randy Pool. Those names submitted to the Governor by our District Bar of attorneys eligible to vote are Joshua Howell, Michelle McEntire, Krinn Evans, Alicia Vega, and myself. This is the second time this year I’ve been among the attorneys submitted to the Governor for consideration in filling a vacancy and I’m humbled by the trust and support.

While NC Gov. Roy Cooper has interviewed several candidates, there is no deadline for his appointment for a replacement. Typically the appointment follows the party of the vacating judge. Pool was Republican and all the nominees for replacement are registered Republicans.

However, Rutherford County has gained a new judgeship for District 41 and an election is scheduled to fill that post. Since there are no Democrat candidates for the judgeship, in order to vote for a judicial candidate you must be registered Republican or registered Unaffiliated and request a Republican ballot. This primary will decide your district court judge.

The candidates who have filed for this seat are:

Anna Kegley – Kegley chose GOP old guard Jordan Barnes as her campaign manager. Her Facebook page showed numerous links to the local GOP party. RC Catalyst requested win/loss court records for Kegley but did not receive a response. As a relatively new judge, Kegley seems to have limited experience and no Superior Court experience according to court records. The relevance of her husband’s criminal conviction record is up to the voters to decide.  (Brian Yelton has a misdemeanor conviction of Level 5 DWI n 6/15/2002, a conviction of some sort in Henderson County in 2013, several traffic and expired registration violations and one carrying concealed on state property in Catawba that was dismissed by the District Attorney.)

Kegley is a graduate of the now defunct Charlotte School of Law.


Corey MacKinnon –

My Professional Background:

our aplogies for picture quality

I am a North Carolina native and raised in McDowell County. My parents still live here and are active throughout the community. I graduated McDowell High in 1999, attended Western Piedmont and began my law enforcement career in 2002. I first served the UNC Charlotte PD briefly and then with the Mooresville Police Department in Iredell County. As a police officer I was tasked as a patrol officer, field training officer, SWAT team member and later as a detective. I earned a degree in Criminal Justice from Western Carolina University while working. As a detective I found I enjoyed the courtroom aspect of my job the most, and made the decision to attend law school. I was fortunate that the police department allowed me to work weekends on patrol while attending school.

During law school I made the decision to continue my public service as a JAG Officer in the US Army. I was on active duty for four years, primarily stationed at Ft Benning, GA. I continue to serve in the Army Reserve, currently assigned as a Senior Defense Counsel for the Mid-Atlantic Region.

After active duty, I opened my own law office in downtown Marion, serving as many citizens as possible in McDowell and Rutherford Counties. After two years, an opportunity presented itself for me to join a District Attorney’s office in a neighboring county, and remain employed with Rutherford County’s DA’s Office.

As you can see from my professional experience, I enjoy public service the most. Serving as a District Court Judge is a position of public service that should be filled by those that are there to serve the community, the defendant, the state and the justice system. While other candidates may have more experience as an attorney, I have a vast background in life experience; the most essential trait for a successful District Court Judge.

Personal Background:
I am married to my high school sweetheart, Elizabeth, and have been for 16 years. She is a nurse practitioner in a local family practice. We have two energetic boys, ages 7 and 10. We both enjoy being a part of this community and playing small roles in making this area better for our children’s future.


Andrew Morrow- Morrow currently represents the defendant in the Judge Pool extortion case.

Morrow did not respond to our questions regarding this arrest record:


A Republican primary will be held on March 3, 2020, deciding who will be on the ballot in November. The are currently no Democrat candidates filed to run. The Republican primary will most likely decide who the district court judge is.