Another throws hat into Senate race

COVINGTON -- Former Henry County Commissioner Rick Jeffares is running for the state Senate District 17 seat.

If elected, Jeffares said he will focus on four key issues, the economy, education, transportation, and reducing taxes and cutting wasteful spending.

"I was first called to public service to give back to the community, which has given so much to me. I am running to help fill a void of conservative leadership and fight for the issues important to us," said Jeffares, a Republican.

"I am not a politician. I am a small business owner and have worked for local communities throughout the 17th District maintaining and protecting our water quality," he continued. "Two years ago, I resigned as city manager to run for the Henry County Commission to provide conservative leadership to my local community. I am now running for the state Senate to bring that same conservative leadership and a strong voice for our community to the state Capitol."

Jeffares resigned from the Henry County Commission following his qualification for state Senate.

Jeffares has a career of public and municipal experience as the former city manager of Locust Grove; director of water and wastewater treatment for the city of Covington; director of water and water pollution control for the city of McDonough; and previously working for the Henry County Water and Sewage Authority.

Jeffares owns J&T Environmental Services, a small business that provides operations and management of water and wastewater treatment plants, water distribution and collection systems. J&T works to preserve and protect the water quality in communities throughout Georgia.

Jeffares serves as vice president on the Georgia Rural Water Association, the North Metropolitan Water District Board, the Water Pollution Control Federation, American Water Works Association and has participated in both Leadership Newton County and Leadership Henry County. He is a certified water treatment system operator and water laboratory analyst.

He is a graduate of Clayton College and State University, where he received a bachelor's degree in technology management. He and his wife, Leslie, live in Henry County. He has four daughters and one grandchild. He attends Sharon Baptist Church.

Jeffares volunteers with Water Missions International, providing relief in devastated areas such as New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.

Jeffares will face Ester Fleming Jr. and Todd Hilton in the July 20 primary. Democrats who qualified for the seat are Nicholas P. Day and Jim Nichols.