Joseph Williams, a Nashville attorney and Teach for America alum, says he’s running as a Republican for the Tennessee House seat in Nashville held by departing Republican House Speaker Beth Harwell.
Williams recently filed papers to run for Tennessee House District 56 in the 2018 election, becoming the second Republican to announce their candidacy for the seat after Harwell entered the race for Tennessee governor.
Republican Brent Moody, a Nashville surgeon, also is seeking the GOP nomination for the House district, which includes parts of Green Hills, Belle Meade, Forest Hills, Oak Hill and Crieve Hall.
Williams, 31, is the co-founder of The Peacefield Group, a legal and policy consulting firm that he started with his wife, Palmer Williams, after practicing law at the American Center for Law and Justice, a conservative, Christian-based watchdog group.
Williams, a native of Memphis, graduated from Vanderbilt University. After undergraduate studies, he worked as a teacher at Whites Creek High School in Nashville as a member of the teacher recruitment organization Teach for America. Williams later graduated from Vanderbilt Law School.
“From my time teaching history and civics in Nashville, I know I can make a difference,” Williams said in a statement. “From my work as a small business owner, I know things are more complicated than they need to be. Raising our two boys with my wife Palmer, I know that we want to be a part of building a better tomorrow for them — and for every Tennessean — that’s why I’m running to serve.”
Williams has named Hunter Sinclair, vice president of The Advisory Board Co., a Nashville-based health care consulting practice, his campaign treasurer.
Tennessee House District 56, which includes some of the state’s most affluent neighborhoods, is Nashville’s lone House seat held by a Republican and is considered a conservative stronghold. Harwell’s departure means the first open election for the seat since the 1980s.
On the Democratic side, Bob Freeman, a real estate professional and son of prominent Tennessee Democratic donor Bill Freeman, is considering a run for House District 56. He is expected to announce a decision soon.
The party primaries are set for next August ahead of the November general election.
AUTHOR: Joey Garrison
SOURCE: The Tennessean