State Sen. John Wilkinson, R-Toccoa, announced Wednesday, Jan. 29, that he would run for the 9th District U.S. House seat.
“This is a critical time for our country, and we need an experienced, conservative voice willing to stand up for the values that residents of North Georgia hold dear,” Wilkinson said in a statement. “For the past eight years in Atlanta, I have fought to eliminate useless red tape and regulation of business, defended the sanctity of all life, and fought for our constitutional rights guaranteed by the 2nd Amendment. I look forward to continuing that fight in Washington.”
The 9th District includes all of Banks, Dawson, Elbert, Fannin, Franklin, Gilmer, Habersham, Hall, Hart, Jackson, Lumpkin, Madison, Rabun, Stephens, Towns, Union and White counties and parts of Clarke, Forsyth and Pickens counties.
U.S. Rep. Doug Collins, R-Gainesville, currently holds the 9th District seat. Collins announced Wednesday that he would run for the U.S. Senate.
Wilkinson’s Georgia Senate district includes parts of Hall County. He was sworn in to the Senate in 2011.
Wilkinson has served as chair of the Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee in the Senate for the past eight years. He also serves as vice chairman of the Education and Youth Committee, as well as a member of the Natural Resources and the Environment, Appropriations and Rules committees. He has served as secretary of the Senate majority caucus for the past six years.
He is a Toccoa native who attended Stephens County High School, then earned degrees in agriculture and education from the University of Georgia. He has worked as a teacher and served on the State Agricultural Education staff for 26 years. He has also served as a state adviser to the Georgia FFA Association and the Georgia Young Farmer Association.
Wilkinson and his wife Debbie have two children and five grandchildren. They are active members of Tates Creek Baptist Church.