COVINGTON -- Greg Pallen, a resident of Oxford, has announced his candidacy for U.S. Congress.
Pallen, a Republican, will join Chris Vaughn and Catherine Davis on the District 4 ballot in the GOP primary on July 31. Conyers residents Lincoln Nunnally and Courtney Dillard have announced they will challenge incumbent Hank Johnson in the Democratic primary.
Pallen, 43, is the owner of Pallen Enterprises Inc. in Conyers, makers of construction fabrics, geotextiles and erosion control products.
In his first run for elective office, Pallen said he believes change is needed in the District 4 leadership.
"For too long our district has been represented by the incumbent who is more interested in his own political position rather than the needs of his district," said Pallen in a written statement. "Rather than serve the citizens of the district, our representative has served his own self-interests. That stops today. I'm running a grassroots campaign for representative because I believe that the only way to solve the problems facing our district is through an open, honest government working in close collaboration with everyone who is willing to help."
Pallen, who is a graduate of the University of Georgia with a business degree, said he has spent the last 10 or 15 years building and growing his business.
"I consider what is going on in our country at this time to be just as important as what is going on in my business," he said.
A native of Wisconsin, Pallen said he moved to Georgia when his family relocated, and he subsequently enrolled at UGA. He has lived in Oxford since 1999. His parents are also residents of Oxford.
"My home and my business are in District 4, which is why I care so passionately about my district and its people," Pallen said.
Pallen said he is ready for the challenge of a political race.
"We are going to work hard over the next three months," he said. "I declared my candidacy a little later than my competition, but my background is management, sales and marketing, so I am going to work hard to get the name out and meet a lot of different people. We are looking forward to the challenge."