Thursday, July 2, 2015

Only two GOP qualified to run for state House seat vacated by Haynes

Carson, left, Zachary, right
A Knox County Board school board member and long-time nurse, and a Knoxville business owner are the only two candidates who will vie for the open state House seat recently vacated by Ryan Haynes.

Both candidates are Republican and no Democrats qualified by Thursday's noon deadline.

That means, barring a major upset by a write-in candidate in the fall, the overall election will be more than likely determined during the Aug. 12 primary.

(The special general election will be Sept. 29, coinciding with the city of Knoxville primary.)

Haynes resigned from the West Knox County 14th District state Rep. seat in late May to serve as the state GOP chairman.

Here's a snapshot of the candidates:

Karen Carson: A pediatric nurse for 35 years, who works at East Tennessee Children's Hospital, she has served on the Knox County Board of Education since 2004. Her website says Carson has been recognized as the Tennessee parent Teacher Association's "Outstanding School Board Representative of the Year" three times. She and her family are members of Concord United Methodist Church. She also serves on the Board of Directors for the YMCA of East Tennessee. She and her husband have been married for 30 years and have three children.

Jason Zachary: Owns Americomm, a small telecommunications firm founded by his family two decades ago. He serves as a deacon at the Farragut Initiative at First Baptist Concord, according to his website. He also serves on the board of International Sports Consulting, and has worked with the Center for Christian Statesmanship on Capitol Hill since last summer. He has been married to his wife for 16 years and has one child. Zachary, drummed up a lot of support from the tea party last year in an unsuccessful campaign to unseat long-time U.S. Rep. John J. Duncan Jr.

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