Pat Banks HD 73
I am running for state representative in Kentucky’s 73rd District because I care about the health of our families, our communities, and our state. I want to fight for the basic principles of our democracy—fairness, equality, respect for others, and government that comes from and protects all of its citizens, not just a select few. We need to get back to common sense and find common ground.
I have lived on the banks of the Kentucky River between Clark and Madison counties for forty years. I’m a mother, a professional artist and a small-business owner. I love the natural beauty of this place. We have a strong agricultural tradition of family farming. The cultural heritage here is rooted in a rich musical tradition, poetry and storytelling, traditional arts and crafts, farming and food traditions that are shared across the country.
Like many rural areas, we are currently dealing with an epidemic of opioid and other addictions. This has affected my family and almost every family I know. People are suffering. We need more treatment options, prevention strategies, and we need to take an honest look at the root causes of the crisis. To keep moving forward, we need a good workforce and that means a healthy workforce and an educated workforce. I strongly support our teachers and public education system.
Kentuckians have been among the hardest working, most productive, diverse, unionized work forces in the world. But in many parts of rural Kentucky, the jobs left the people, they didn’t leave the jobs. My mother came from a family of twelve and not one sibling was able to stay “home” because they had to leave the area to look for work.
This region has been underserved for good jobs, infrastructure, communications and healthcare for generations. Large scale industrialized farming and extractive industries have left behind a legacy of bankruptcies and a reduced tax base.
It will take hard work to build and grow with these challenging odds but I want to do that work on behalf of my community and neighbors. I will be their advocate and I will fight for what is right. I believe we can bring our democratic traditions together with our entrepreneurial spirit to find solutions to our problems. I believe the resiliency and struggles of people in rural areas like mine can teach and inspire the world.
Terri Branham Clark HD 100
Paula Clemons Combs SD 30
Terri Branham Clark is a lifelong resident of Boyd County and has been advocating to improve the quality of life in this community for more than 30 years. She began her work in nonprofits while a college student at Ashland Community College working with the Greater Ashland Foundation and Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital. Those internships introduced a lifetime of nonprofit commitment. From end-of-life care to arts education to fighting hunger and poverty, Terri has devoted time and energy to sustaining organizations that provide need to others.
In addition to her professional work, volunteering fundraising efforts to local athletic teams, civic organizations and school groups when needed has spanned a lifetime.
Currently, Terri is the owner of Vida Loca Properties, Inc. She opened her first business in Boyd County in 1989 and has continued a commitment to establishing and growing small businesses in this area.
However, all of her nonprofit and entrepreneur endeavors were accomplished as a side note to her most important position - Mom.
As the mother of four grown children, Chelsea, Taylor, Jaycie and Zac, the past 28 years have been devoted to raising her family. Her children and grandchildren are the guiding force in her life and inspire a deeper passion to improve the world in which we live.
Taking Back the Commonwealth for not only her children, but also yours has inspired Terri to take her ability to advocate on behalf of others to Frankfort. She will fight for the 100th District and an improved quality of life for all its residents.
Paula has been a resident of Breathitt County since she was born many years ago in Johnson County. She attended the local elementary, middle, and high schools in her hometown and later furthered her education at Lees Junior College and Morehead State University. After college, Paula entered her chosen profession as a public school teacher and is currently in her twenty-first year serving the students of Breathitt County. This is where she has come to know many of the issues facing our region through interactions with students, parents, and the community at large.
Paula is committed to the growth and vitality of District 30 and the welfare of those who live here– my family, my friends, and my neighbors. At the heart of this is her belief that we in the mountains have been dismissed from the overall consciousness of the political juggernaut referred to as “Frankfort”. Paula summarizes the district, “Our people may be poor in terms of financial resources, but we are a resilient lot and with the assistance we deserve we can begin to dig our way out of this depressed hole our current and previously-elected leaders have been content to leave us in.”
Seeking the State Senator seat for District 30 is Paula’s first venture into running for office. What she lacks in experience as a professional politician she makes up for in drive and desire – she is fully vested in seeing not just Bell, Breathitt, Leslie, Johnson, Magoffin, and Perry counties prospering again, but also the entire region. After all, she is raising her family here and she wants her children and yours to have a future here. Paula will stay involved with the communities in her district because she wants to see real changes that are positive and can sustain themselves throughout the years.
Morgan Eaves HD 81
Morgan Eaves is an attorney in Richmond, Kentucky, and a current member of the Richmond City Commission. She is a Democrat seeking the office of State Representative for the 81st District. A Madison County native, she is eager to lead District 81 forward, putting their interests first. She is passionate about the improvement of quality of life in the District, including issues related to poverty, drug addiction and jail overcrowding, economic development, and equal access to quality education and a living wage.
Mona Eldridge HD 85
Mona Hampton-Eldridge has worn many hats in her life and knows what it is like to overcome adversity.
Mona was born and raised in Pulaski County. She is the daughter of Harold and Linda Hampton. She has two sons, Anthony and Nathaniel, and is married to her wonderful husband, Jon Eldridge. Additionally, as the granddaughter of former Burnside mayor, Joe Hampton, she is no stranger to politics.
Mona knows what it is like to overcome challenges. For many years, Mona raised her sons as a single mother. She worked two or more jobs to make ends meet while putting herself through college at Eastern Kentucky University. Mona worked her way up through the Pulaski County School System, first as an aide, then as a substitute teacher. Since 2008, she has worked as a teacher at Northern Middle School. Mona is currently an 8th grade Language Arts teacher. Beyond her job as a teacher, she also holds leadership roles as an eighth grade Team Leader, is a member of the school's Site Based Decision Making Council, and helps co-sponsor Northern's Youth-in-Government program known as Y-Club.
Like many in the 85th district, the drug crisis hits close to home. Mona's son Nathaniel was recently attacked and nearly stabbed to death by drug users who broke into his home looking for money and prescriptions. Additionally, both of her brothers have overcome their battles with addiction and are now helping others fight their battle through ministry and their company, Hampton Construction. Mona volunteers with her brothers helping others overcome their addictions at Celebrate Recovery at her home church, Pisgah Presbyterian.
Mona's life experiences have shaped her candidacy. Everyday Mona and her students experience the consequences of Frankfort not fully funding education. She works with college students who fear there is no future as a teacher in Kentucky. She has felt the consequence of Matt Bevin and Tommy Turner taking away her husband's retirement benefits. She has experienced the consequences of drugs harming her loved ones.
With your write-in vote, Mona is ready to fight back and create change in Frankfort!
Denise Gray SD 28
Denise Gray J.D. was born and raised on the North side of Lexington, Kentucky, and is a proud 1997 graduate of Bryan Station High School. She is also a graduate of the University of Louisville where she received a B.A. in Communications and was a member of the National Championship Cheerleading Squad. After undergraduate school, Ms. Gray graduated from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. Ms. Gray is committed to public service and has dedicated her life to serving her community.
After much soul searching and reflecting, Ms. Gray made the difficult decision not to practice law, but rather follow her strong desire to work with children. Currently, Ms. Gray is employed with Fayette County Public Schools working with special needs children. As a testament to Ms. Gray’s dedication to public service and her commitment to her community, she has undertaken leadership roles at her church, Consolidated Baptist Church, with its Children’s Ministry, as well as an active member of the Fayette County Democratic Party’s Executive Committee as the 76th Legislative District Chairperson.
She is active with numerous civic groups including The Women’s Network. Ms. Gray works tirelessly with the Kentucky Education Association as a member of its Program and Budget Committee, and was a KEA Fellow representing support staff throughout the state of Kentucky. She is also a member of the Fayette County Education Support Association’s Executive Board. She has also been featured as part of the National Education Association’s See Educators Run Program. Ms. Gray is family-oriented and strongly supported by her parents, siblings, family and friends.
Susan Byrne Haddix SD 34
Susan Byrne Haddix is a retired high school physics and math teacher in Berea, Kentucky who earned more than a dozen awards and grants for excellence and innovative teaching during her 30 years of service to the teenagers and their families in Madison County. Teaching, being a mother and long-term caregiver to her deceased soulmate wasn’t enough so she also coached Science Olympiad, Chess, and Academic Team. All this still left a little time so she was also a Girl Scout Leader, 4-H sponsor, VBS and Sunday School teacher equaling more than 70 years of service in her purpose driven life. As a UK and EKU graduate Ms. Haddix amassed 45 hours beyond an MA and the ability to do rocket science. She is a scientist with critical reading skills and the ability to base decisions on facts. Becoming a retired empty nested widow within the last three years she has decided to up her lifelong passion to help all people by running for 34th district Ky State Senate.
Angie Hatton HD 94
I'm a I am the newly elected State Representative in the 94th District of Kentucky covering Letcher County and portions of Pike County. Ready to go to work!
(Angie Hatton is running unopposed.)
Kathy Hinkle HD 96
Kathy Hinkle is a product of Kentucky. The daughter of a hard-working and everyday family, Kathy saw firsthand what it takes to make ends meet. After graduating from Louisa High School, Kathy went on to attend Eastern Kentucky University. During her time at EKU, Kathy's passion for community service flourished.
Kathy always knew she wanted to return to her Lawrence County home where she could give back to the region that, in her words, had given so much to her. Kathy Hinkle did just that.
Going to work for the Lawrence County Board of Education, Kathy became known for her belief that a society would be judged on the well-being and upbringing of it's children. For years Kathy worked in an array of areas of the school system filling in wherever she was needed, but Kathy's passion for children's causes was about to be taken to an entirely new level.
In 1997, Kathy went to work for the Kentucky Child Assault Prevention Agency (KCAP). Traveling to different schools and institutions throughout the region, Kathy Hinkle became a leading advocate for children in the Commonwealth. Kathy would eventually be named an organization Executive and, under her leadership, would greatly expand the reach of KCAP.
In addition to her public service in Kentucky, Kathy has also served as a Sunday School teacher in her Louisa church for forty-two years. Kathy is married to Lafe and they have one daughter, Julia. Kathy's favorite role is that of grandmother and her commitment to bettering the Commonwealth stems from her hope that our tomorrow will be better than our today.
Stefanie Ebbens Kingsley HD 82
Stefanie Kingsley is a Consumer Rights attorney experienced in advocating for everyday Kentuckians for more than a decade. Stefanie owns a small law practice on Main Street in Corbin, where she works to help the people of Eastern Kentucky achieve financial security. For the better part of a decade Stefanie worked in Legal Aid in Appalachia, serving the most vulnerable community members. It was here that she learned the strengths and struggles of our Eastern Kentucky communities in the heart of Appalachia. Stefanie is honored to run for State Representative, and take her economic platform up every holler and hill in eastern Kentucky to get her message out.
Stefanie lives on a small farm in Williamsburg with her husband Fred Kingsley, an RN at Baptist Health Corbin, on their small mountain top farm with 4 dogs, 2 cats, and 26 chickens. Stefanie sits on the Baptist Health Corbin Foundation Board, is a Committee member for the Whitley County Farmers' Market, Whitley County Cooperative Extension Office Horticulture Council Advisory Board member, and a new member to the Whitley County Transition Team, which provides resources attempting to assist our neighbors in active recovery achieve sobriety.
Ashley Tackett Laferty HD 95
I feel compelled to go to Frankfort and defend our working families. While power bills and taxes climb, I can no longer stand silently and watch legislation which systematically drives down wages and strips away the rights of working and injured people.
The recent war waged against the pension benefits of our public employees at every level – from teachers to police officers to other state workers – was the last straw. This attack is a violation of our Commonwealth’s long-standing promise to the men and women who made it their commitment to educate our children, protect our families and serve our state.
Here in Floyd and Pike counties, those who work in our schools, coal mines, hospitals, and small businesses are the bedrock of our local communities. These very important people and jobs are being squeezed of every dollar and benefit they have earned and deserve. Not only must they be protected, and the resources we already have available to us utilized, but it is also important that every effort be made to attract new industry and amenities to our community to encourage and promote its growth.
I am devoted to this community, and committed to its future. I would like to take this opportunity to ask for your vote and support in serving you as the next Representative of the 95th House District.
Debbie Payne HD 86
Good morning, I’m Debbie Payne. I am running to be Knox and Southern Laurel County’ State Representative. I am a retired teacher who taught for 30 years. My first 5 years in a classroom, I mourned the bareness of the walls, the tattered, spineless, text books, the lack of money for basic supplies, and the lack of field trips to expand the child’s understanding of classroom lessons. In 1990, I rejoiced as KERA funding reforms catapulted Knox and Laurel County schools from barely funded; into a new era for the children’s future. A Santa’s sack of all-things-needed (and paid for) arrived in school systems in rural KY. The children suddenly had new, shiny-paged text books, computers (2, in every classroom), plus, a computer lab, and a Family Resource Center to address the needs of our children who couldn’t have them met at home. Wonder of wonders, the student’s parents gained an equal voice in the decisions involved in their childrens’s education. Christmas Morning in an education bill. But those gains are no longer.
The recent cuts to education funding in the Commonwealth are what convinced me to run for office. Education is the difference between success and poverty for our children. It should be the first priority of our legislators. If things are to change someone who is willing to work for those changes MUST be in the position to bring them about. We have much work to do on many fronts: education, criminal Justice Reform, health care, economy. I’m working hard to meet voters but it’s a big job in a rural community.
I’m asking for your support on November 6, to elect Debra Ferguson Payne for State Representative. Please visit my web page and tell me what you are most concerned about in the 86th district.
Mary Turley-Renfro HD 71
My district is made up of Garrard, Rockcastle and parts of Madison County. I moved to Berea and graduated from Eastern Kentucky University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work in 1992.
I am a Realtor at A Unique Realty Company. I have been married to my husband, Wayne for 25 years. We have 2 biological daughters together and have adopted 3 kids from the Foster Care System and also have a relative placement. We have a total of 6 beautiful daughters together, ages 7, 8, 10, 11, 17 and 21 years old.
I have served on the Madison County School Board member for the last 6 years. I have been fiscally conservative in this position and have helped managed a budget of over $100 Million Dollars. During my time serving the School Board, I was able to help introduce All Day Kindergarten, free lunch to all the kids in the county, a new Central Office, had a new school built on Boonesborough Road, land for our 2 new Career Centers to be built one in Richmond and one in Berea. There are many great things happening within Madison County Schools.
I decided to run for the House of Representatives District 71 in November 2017. I knew I could be the voice for so many people, especially when it came to education. This past year, things in Frankfort have been in turmoil because of the sneaky pension thrown into the well on a Sewer Bill affecting Teachers and Public Workers Pensions. These issues haven’t gone away. There is still no resolution. Public education is a RIGHT and needs to be available to every individual. We must take care of our teachers and state workers.
They need their promised pensions. They DESERVE their pension and benefits. We have to step up as a community and make sure our beloved
state is going to provide the best opportunities for our children's futures.
The opioid crisis in Kentucky has become an overwhelming problem. We have got to figure out ways to stop the drug cycle in our communities. Children are going into the foster system at rapid levels. As of September 2018, there is 9,654 children in the Kentucky foster system. 9,654 children have to wonder what is going to happen to them on a daily basis. Every child is entitled to have a stable, loving home and to have the assurance they will not have to pack what few things they have up in garbage bags and be moved to a new household because of their parents/ guardians life choices include drugs.
These children need a free 4 year college degree or tech school, a Medical Card, and money to raise the child that is comparable to what foster care parents receive.
Daycare assistance is also necessary. Child care is a huge expense for families. Most of us do not have $500 a month for child care expenses on top
of our everyday expenses and bills.
I am for the farmers, we have to find new crops to bring in a new cash revenue. I am for helping and encouraging small business owners.
Kelly Smith HD 89
Kelly Smith is a librarian from Madison County, the wife of a Berea College professor, a proud mother of two talented sons, a community activist, and a Democrat.
Kelly graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a degree in painting and ceramics and then served a year as an AmeriCorps volunteer with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society before pursuing her graduate studies in library science at Simmons College. She worked briefly as a law librarian and as a public librarian, but has spent most of her professional life working in academic libraries.
Although she has lived all over the country, Kelly has lived in Kentucky the longest and is fully invested in her community and region. She was a state organizer of the Women’s March on Washington, successfully coordinating bus transportation to DC for hundreds of women to get to the march and collaborating with local city marches throughout the state. In 2017, she became heavily involved in the grassroots organization, Kentuckians for the Commonwealth, talking with legislators and speaking out at rallies in support of the preservation of public pensions.
Teaching students and other researchers to find the information they need is her life calling. She never thought she would run for office of any kind. But witnessing the effects of Frankfort’s war on education over the past two years inspired her to give back to her community in a different way.