By L.A. Williams, Correspondent
Christian Action League
RALEIGH – Rep. Bonner L. Stiller (R-Brunswick) will head with his family to Yellowstone National Park this coming week after resigning his post in the Legislature to spend more time with his wife and kids and at his Southport law firm. But the seven-year veteran of the House of Representatives says he hasn’t ruled out the idea of running for office again when his children are older.
“Being in the Legislature is not a family friendly job at all,” said Stiller, 53, on Friday. “I haven’t been on vacation with my children in six years.”
With two daughters in college and sons headed into the seventh and 10th grades, Stiller said he is one of few lawmakers who still have children living at home and who doesn’t live close enough to drive home for the evening. The senior partner of Stiller and Disbrow also said his law practice needs more attention.
“I’ve been sort of setting this up for about five months. The economy is such that it affects everybody,” Stiller said. “I’ve only been able to put in two days a week – Mondays and Fridays – at the law office. And family and career have to come first.”
A former school teacher who went to law school in his 30s, Stiller said he is most proud of the “dignity, honor and integrity” which marked his time in the legislature, where he said he tried his best to represent the people from his district.
“Sometimes you have to put your own personal position aside because you represent 65,000 people and on some bills, what the majority says may be the opposite of what you would have chosen,” he said.
He is also proud of the part he played in bringing two multimillion-dollar bridge projects to Brunswick County and in helping keep out a huge automobile waste dump.
Stiller has worked alongside the Christian Action League on a number of issues. Just in the current session, among the many bills he has sponsored are the Abortion-Woman’s Right to Know bill, the Defense of Marriage bill and a bill called No Bullying Anyone at Public Schools, the bullying bill without the controversial list of potential victim categories. He has served this session as vice chairman of Judiciary I and Marine Resources and Aquaculture and as a member of eight other standing committees.
“While we certainly hate to see Rep. Stiller leave the Legislature, we commend his commitment to family and his taking this step to put priorities in the proper order,” said the Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League. “We appreciate his work on these and other important issues and pray for God’s riches blessing on him and his family.”
A graduate of East Carolina University in Greenville and North Carolina Central University School of Law in Durham, Stiller was elected to represent District 17 over incumbent Democrat David Redwine in 2002 and defeated him again in 2004. He retained the seat against challenges from Allen Dameron in 2006 and Vernon Ward in 2008.
He said Friday that when his sons are older, he would entertain the idea of another run for the House, adding “we’ll just have to wait and see what happens.”