Who’s running? Over 20 local candidates file for state office

Bowling Green senior Joseph Jones casts his vote in this year’s general election at McNeil Elementary School. “Like most people, I’m not really satisfied with the choices for president…(I’ve) just got to do my duty,” Jones said.

All 100 seats in the Kentucky House of Representatives are up for election in 2018 and 19 seats are up for election in the Senate, and now that the candidate filing deadline has passed we know who’s running. 

To find out which candidate you’re eligible to vote for, and what your precinct location is, visit this website and fill out the requested information. 

If you will be 18 by the November election, haven’t registered to vote before or need to change/update your voter information, such as where you currently live, then visit here

Ever since State Rep. Jody Richards (D) announced he wouldn’t seek re-election this year, the competition for his seat has grown ever crowded by the day. 

There are officially eight candidates running to fill Kentucky’s 20th district House seat. The 20th district constitutes primarily the city limits of Bowling Green and then some. For instance, if you’re a student and are registered to vote in Bowling Green and your address is on campus or at the Registry, for example, you would fall into the 20th district. 

Five Democrats and three Republicans are running. 

Here are the Democrat candidates:

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>Rick DuBose is <span>a former WKU assistant vice president for alumni relations and executive director of the alumni association.</span></p> <p><span><span>DuBose retired from WKU at the end of 2016 after working in the development and alumni relations divisions for nearly 19 years. </span></span></p> <p><span><a href="https://wkuherald.com/news/former-alumni-executive-rick-dubose-files-for-house-seat/article_319b323a-054b-11e8-a5d1-2b9c3464bade.html" target="_blank">According to a press release</a>, DuBose’s primary priorities will be expanding and improving workforce development and funding public education at all levels, including restoring funding to WKU and other post-secondary education opportunities.</span></p>” id=”849eaa16-67ea-42e8-afd9-547f2ccf2e2e” style-type=”bio” title=”Rick DuBose (D)” type=”relcontent” width=”full”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><span>Minter is a current professor of history at WKU. </span></p> <p><span><a href="https://www.wku.edu/history/faculty-staff/patricia_minter.php" target="_blank">According to her WKU bio</a>, she serves on the Board of Directors for the American Society for Legal History and on the Board of Directors of the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky.</span></p> <p><span><span><span>She served as the inaugural chair of the WKU University Senate from 2000-2001 and from 2007 to 2014 </span><span>served as the elected Faculty Regent on the WKU Board of Regents.</span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span>Minter is also a </span><span>a founding member of Bowling Green </span><span>Fairness, a group which has been lobbying the Bowling Green City Commission to adopt a fairness ordinance making <span>sexual orientation and gender identity as protected categories to existing civil rights laws. </span></span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span>More information here: <a href="https://www.facebook.com/PattiMinterForKy/" target="_blank">https://www.facebook.com/PattiMinterForKy/</a></span></span></span></p>” id=”0999e026-5e6e-4b85-a54e-cc648fb8c4b4″ style-type=”bio” title=”Patti Minter (D)” type=”relcontent” width=”full”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><span>Nash received his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1993 in the field of Sociology and Criminology from WKU. </span></p> <p>Nash <span>was first elected to the Bowling Green City Commission in 2004. </span>He has served four consecutive terms from 2005–2012 before losing re-election but was elected once again to serve starting January of last year.</p> <p><span><span><span>During his time in office, Slim authored the “Clean In-Door Air Ordinance” which prevents smoking inside buildings open to the public. Slim also co-authored the pay and benefits package for the police and fire departments, according to his commissioner bio. </span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/news/dui-charge-against-nash-dismissed-commissioner-fined-for-improper-turn/article_71924e10-4bc6-5924-9f18-1ee78e84218e.html" target="_blank">According to the Daily News</a>, <span>Nash was arrested in 2013 on suspicion of driving under the influence and making an improper turn and the charge against him was dismissed in December of 2017. </span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span>Read more about him here: <a href="https://www.bgky.org/city-commission/slim-nash" target="_blank">https://www.bgky.org/city-commission/slim-nash</a></span></span></span></p>” id=”e83e7f25-18ef-4bab-a70d-89d41d282749″ style-type=”bio” title=”Brian Nash (D)” type=”relcontent”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>Porter graduated from WKU with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science and Sociology, with minors in Criminology and Public Law.</p> <p>She graduated from the University of Kentucky College of Law in 2009. </p> <p>In 2012, she opened her own practice in Bowling Green. In 2017, she joined Crain | Schuette Attorneys, <a href="http://www.csafirm.com/who-we-are/ashlea-shepherd-porter/" target="_blank">according to her bio on the firm’s website</a>. </p> <p>"<span>I have devoted the past nine years to speaking for the children and families of our community in the courtroom, and I believe now is the time for me to speak for every resident of Bowling Green </span>in Frankfort," <a href="http://www.wbko.com/content/news/Bowling-Green-attorney-running-for-Jody-Richards-house-seat-470216733.html" target="_blank">she said in a press release posted by WBKO</a>. </p> <p><span>More information here: <a href="https://www.facebook.com/Ashlea-Shepherd-Porter-for-20th-District-State-Representative-173485120079950/" target="_blank">https://www.facebook.com/Ashlea-Shepherd-Porter-for-20th-District-State-Representative-173485120079950/</a></span></p>” id=”50b6bb62-c6e1-4620-884b-baab3ae2bad7″ style-type=”bio” title=”Ashlea Shepherd Porter (D)” type=”relcontent” width=”full”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><span>Renaud served as Bowling Green’s mayor from 1996 to 2000 and is the former president of United Auto Workers Local 2164 at the General Motors Bowling Green Assembly Plant, <a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/news/former-bg-mayor-among-candidates-for-richards-seat/article_1967014e-4809-54d5-9803-74169e2d3f4a.html" target="_blank">according to the Daily News</a>. </span></p> <p><span><span>Renaud told the Daily News the state’s troubled pension system in large part spurred him to seek public office again.</span></span></p>” id=”13019e1c-10a0-4c49-b91a-1c1a17534032″ style-type=”bio” title=”Eldon John Renaud (D)” type=”relcontent” width=”full”}}

Here are the Republican candidates:

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><span>Alcott is a Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps instructor at Warren East High School, <a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/news/commissioner-nash-among-running-for-richards-house-seat/article_1a7d22b5-0c14-54df-9ab6-c74381be41d7.html" target="_blank">according to the Daily News</a>.</span></p> <div class="subscriber-only"><p>Alcott <a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/news/fourth-candidate-files-to-run-for-richards-seat/article_e730c36c-371d-5cf7-8c5a-f0a7e7e18de6.html" target="_blank">told the Daily News</a> he saw “an opportunity,” with Richards’ retirement, adding that Richards has been “an icon in the community and I am in awe of his accomplishments.”</p></div> <div class="subscriber-only"><p>Alcott grew up in Warren County but spent 21 years in the Air Force before returning to Bowling Green in 2016.</p></div>” id=”547d7e44-5c5e-413a-b0be-5f49fea01638″ style-type=”bio” title=”Todd R. Alcott (R)” type=”relcontent” width=”full”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/troy-brooks-7408b963/" target="_blank">According to his LinkedIn profile</a>, Brooks graduated from WKU in 1986 with a Bachelor’s degree in history. </p> <p>He also received a Juris Doctor degree from the Nashville School of Law. </p> <p>His most recent employment was at <span>Oasis Outsourcing as a "professional employer consultant."</span></p> <p><span>In 2014, Brooks ran for Kentucky Senate. <a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/special_sections/election/2014_elections/ky-senate-candidate-has-history-of-charges/article_cceb145f-567e-585e-ae0d-e5ff8fec7b1d.html" target="_blank">According to the Daily News</a>, Brooks was <span>once indicted on numerous theft charges and was disbarred in Tennessee – terminating his status as a lawyer. </span></span></p>” id=”50ba45cb-27ce-49c5-9c83-924026b6004a” style-type=”bio” title=”Troy Brooks (R)” type=”relcontent”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><span>Lawson currently works at <span>Van Meter Insurance. </span></span></p> <p><span>Lawson is a Bowling Green native, graduate of Bowling Green High School and received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Oklahoma in 2011.</span></p> <p>He co-vice chaired the 2016 Republican Presidential Caucus in Warren County, served as the Youth Chair for the Republican Party of Warren County since 2012 and is the Chair of the Southern Kentucky Young Republicans. </p> <p><span>"After much prayer, thought, and discussion I am both humbled and encouraged to announce my candidacy to represent the great people of Bowling Green," <a href="https://wkuherald.com/news/two-announce-run-to-replace-rep-jody-richards/article_b697d70e-f4c0-11e7-b282-437255ebbe48.html" target="_blank">he said in a press release</a>. </span></p> <p><span>More information here: <a href="https://www.facebook.com/Lawson4KY/" target="_blank">https://www.facebook.com/Lawson4KY/</a></span></p>” id=”266a68ed-311b-4428-acdc-47805bfc603a” style-type=”bio” title=”Benjamin T. Lawson (R)” type=”relcontent”}}

While the city of Bowling Green mainly falls into the 20th House district, parts of Warren County fall into the 19th district

There are three Democrats and two Republicans running for this seat. 

Here are the Republican candidates: 

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>Meredith is the incumbent for the 19th district seat. </p> <p>He has been a state representative since 2011 and <a href="https://wkuherald.com/news/warren-county-state-legislators-removed-from-leadership-roles/article_15e99a3c-c274-11e7-b494-13eb0be8fdf1.html" target="_blank">previously </a><span><a href="https://wkuherald.com/news/warren-county-state-legislators-removed-from-leadership-roles/article_15e99a3c-c274-11e7-b494-13eb0be8fdf1.html" target="_blank">was the co-chair of the Local Government committee</a>.</span></p> <p><span>In scandal, which <a href="https://wkuherald.com/news/bowling-green-state-representative-accused-of-sexual-harassment/article_c42e12d2-c1a0-11e7-a252-0f8116a64ff9.html" target="_blank">erupted last November</a>, i<span>nvolving former Kentucky House Speaker Jeff Hoover, Bowling Green Representative </span><a href="http://www.lrc.ky.gov/legislator/H017.htm" target="_blank">Jim DeCesare (R)</a>, Meredith and <span>Brian Linder (R) were accused of being <span>parties to a sexual harassment lawsuit Hoover settled in secret. </span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span><span>An anonymously sourced report by the </span><a href="http://www.courier-journal.com/story/news/2017/11/01/jeff-hoover-sexual-harassment-claim/821468001/" target="_blank">Louisville Courier-Journal</a><span> said Hoover "reached a confidential settlement over sexual harassment allegations by a woman who works on his legislative staff." </span></span></span></span></p> <p><span><span><span>Neither DeCesare or Linder have filed to run for re-election. </span></span></span></p>” id=”1a13be33-9b63-494a-aa0c-bf9ae32c42e5″ style-type=”bio” title=”Michael Lee Meredith (R)” type=”relcontent”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>Strow is an economics professor and <span>runs the WKU BB&T Center for the Study of Capitalism. </span></p> <p><span><a href="https://www.wku.edu/economics/staff/brian_strow" target="_blank">According to his WKU bio</a>, he <span>specializes in public policy, economic history and macroeconomics.</span></span></p> <p><span><span><span>He has served as an economic advisor to multiple elected officials and has served as an elected Bowling Green City Commissioner and is a former President of the Kentucky Economic Association, according to his bio. </span></span></span></p>” id=”1e238ebb-b905-4d06-bfcc-f11b5338a870″ style-type=”bio” title=”Brian Kent Strow (R)” type=”relcontent”}}

Here are the Democrat candidates:

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>Fishback is <span>a retired Warren County deputy sheriff/court security officer, <a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/news/democrat-files-to-run-for-seat-held-by-meredith/article_1e642206-20c9-5227-be0c-f434bf1e2175.html" target="_blank">according to the Daily News</a>. </span></p> <p><span>He <span>graduated from WKU and worked in homebuilding and the mortgage industry. He spent the last 16 years with the Warren County Sheriff’s Office before retiring in early January, the Daily News reported. </span></span></p>” id=”6872587a-c820-4e23-bef8-d1fb5a9246d7″ style-type=”bio” title=”William Fishback (D)” type=”relcontent”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>We’ve reached out to Johnson through an email function on the Secretary of State’s website to learn more about him. </p>” id=”fe701099-7fa3-4f14-9a0f-26301de37816″ style-type=”bio” title=”Daniel Wayne Johnson (D)” type=”relcontent”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>We’ve reached out to Moore through an email function on the Secretary of State’s website to learn more about him. </p>” id=”5c29cd0c-3343-40da-af71-145863d85082″ style-type=”bio” title=”Jacob K. Moore (D)” type=”relcontent”}}

Part of Warren County falls into the 17th district where five candidates are running. State Rep. Jim DeCesare (R) is not running for re-election. 

One Democrat and four Republicans are running for this seat. 

Here are the Republican candidates:

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/news/decesare-will-not-seek-re-election/article_c647e21d-1975-50a6-95ae-fc7357da2450.html" target="_blank">According to the Daily News</a>, Franzell has <span>ran twice unsuccessfully for Butler County judge-executive. </span></p> <p><span><a href="http://wkms.org/post/challengers-line-fill-seats-currently-held-decesare-meredith" target="_blank">WKMS says</a> Franzell is a business owner in Morgantown. </span></p>” id=”22321030-a386-4b7f-9dcd-2bba29feeb69″ style-type=”bio” title=”Joey Franzell (R)” type=”relcontent”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><a href="https://www.csmonitor.com/USA/2018/0126/Scores-of-teachers-file-for-Kentucky-legislature-demand-seat-at-the-table" target="_blank">According to the Associated Press</a>, Graham is the band director at Warren Central High School. </p> <p class="p402_premium">He told the AP he supports charter schools, but only to fill educational gaps in a school district. He also said state officials must make changes to the pension system, but says any changes must be fair and preserve benefits.</p> <p class="p402_premium">"I think the governor’s heart is in the right place most of the time, but certainly his rhetoric has made accomplishing some of his goals more challenging," Graham said to the AP. "Part of the reason I’m running is to just help get things done. And to restore a measure of civility to our legislative process."</p>” id=”9d6ac27e-c592-40e3-a0a9-6c10336e4bc5″ style-type=”bio” title=”David M. Graham (R)” type=”relcontent”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>Sheldon is <span>is CEO of Sheldon’s Express Pharmacy.</span></p> <p><span>When asked about challenges facing the healthcare industry in <a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/community/talk-of-the-town-q-a-with-steve-sheldon/article_b91a48aa-0f4a-5ee2-a3ae-d6b6bc5150f3.html" target="_blank">a 2015 Q&A session with the Daily News</a>, Sheldon said:</span></p> <p><span>"<span>In the midst of increased regulation and government control, many providers have become discouraged in many different areas of health care. Reimbursements are going lower and lower, and the same care is expected. However, I am a firm believer in keeping our focus on the patients and customers, in my opinion, everything else will take care of itself." </span></span></p>” id=”ac3aa7a1-ea14-4eb3-9287-97042779013d” style-type=”bio” title=”Steve Sheldon (R)” type=”relcontent”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><a href="http://www.wbko.com/content/news/Mike-Wilson-announces-candidacy-for-17th-District-State-House-of-Representatives-seat-468641843.html" target="_blank">According to WBKO</a>, Wilson is currently the Director of Facilities with Warren County Public Schools.</p> <p>In a press release, he said the state is currently experiencing some difficult economic decisions, but that the best is still ahead for all Kentuckians.</p>” id=”18e1a66e-3a48-45c8-9ad2-dec01058d754″ style-type=”bio” title=”Michael A. Wilson (R)” type=”relcontent”}}

Here’s the Democrat candidate:

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>In 2014, Cherry ran for <span>Fifth District Magistrate but did not win the seat.</span></p> <p><span>According to a <a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/news/q-a-with-malcolm-cherry/article_fe161dbb-4744-57c9-8aa8-1af7dc77a7a6.html" target="_blank">Daily News Q&A from 2014</a>, he is "<span>a 37-year successful business owner, first operating American Machine and Welding, and most recently, Metals N’ More." </span></span></p> <p><span><span>He served for three years in the Marines, including 18 months in Vietnam. </span></span></p> <p><span><span>When asked by the <a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/community/talk-of-the-town-q-a-with-malcolm-cherry/article_a8e1684d-3c41-5088-865a-6071405ad43b.html" target="_blank">Daily News in a 2015 interview </a>about the biggest need for returning veterans he said: "<span>hey need to find employment and in some cases medical care from the Veterans Administration, and they need to be respected for the service they gave our country." </span> </span></span></p>” id=”ea985de2-991f-43cf-b9fe-a1934f7a26ce” style-type=”bio” title=”Malcolm Cherry (D)” type=”relcontent”}}

Last, but not least, there are three candidates running for state senator for the 32nd district. If you are registered to vote anywhere in Warren County, inside Bowling Green city limits or not, you fall into this district. Mike Wilson (R) is the incumbent. 

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><a href="http://www.lrc.ky.gov/legislator/S032.htm" target="_blank">Wilson</a> is the incumbent for the 32nd district. </p> <p>He has served in the Senate since 2011. Wilson <span>was elected by fellow Senate GOP Caucus members to serve as a member of leadership as Senate Majority Whip.</span></p> <p><span>Read more about Wilson: <a href="http://www.senatormikewilson.com/new-page" target="_blank">http://www.senatormikewilson.com/new-page</a></span></p> <p><span>Read about his legislative work: <a href="https://www.billtrack50.com/LegislatorDetail/6300" target="_blank">https://www.billtrack50.com/LegislatorDetail/6300</a></span></p>” id=”71fc0ea6-f577-4e6d-99db-98810ca26161″ style-type=”bio” title=”Mike Wilson (R)” type=”relcontent”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p><span>Smith graduated from WKU in 2005, and majored in history and social studies.</span></p> <p><span><span>“I am a Hilltopper," Smith said. "I spent a lot of time on these steps. I was excited when I was here as a student, and I’m excited now, and I want people to join in this campaign with me," <a href="https://wkuherald.com/news/wku-alumna-runs-for-district-senate/article_41438a4a-9e70-5984-af5e-30684408d9cb.html" target="_blank">Smith said at an event announcing her candidacy last October</a>.</span></span></p> <p><span>She teaches social studies in the Warren County school district. </span></p> <p><span>At the event she <span>proposed increasing wages, providing access to training programs and creating a more fair tax structure as means of improvement. </span></span></p> <p><span><span>More information here: <a href="https://www.facebook.com/JeanieSmithforKentucky/" target="_blank">https://www.facebook.com/JeanieSmithforKentucky/</a></span></span></p>” id=”85f21864-37de-4a44-9346-dcb3c0954f5b” style-type=”bio” title=”Jeanie Smith (D)” type=”relcontent”}}

{{tncms-inline content=”<p>Traughber was elected <a href="http://www.warrencountyky.gov/sixth-district-magistrate-darrell-traughber" target="_blank">Sixth District Magistrate</a> in 2010 and reelected in 2014.</p> <p>He <a href="http://www.bgdailynews.com/news/traughber-not-seeking-reelection-to-magisterial-seat-to-make-senate/article_c4e86d7f-31ac-5d98-96cb-4f4d6b4fda5b.html" target="_blank">told the Daily News</a> that he <span>is concerned with the state’s underfunded pension system as well as the lack of full funding for the Kentucky State Police.</span></p> <p><span>He also told the Daily News his <span>top priority is addressing the state’s pension system. </span></span></p>” id=”1bbf53fa-98a1-4ca3-a0db-e7cdcfa9a87c” style-type=”bio” title=”Darrell Traughber (R)” type=”relcontent”}}

If you have any questions about elections in Kentucky, visit the State Board of Elections website