On Thursday, lifetime Lawrence County resident James Ratliff of Imboden formally announced that he will run as a Democrat for state representative of District 73.
A 1978 honor graduate of Lynn High School, Ratliff holds a bachelor of science in agriculture, as well as a master of science in agriculture education, both from Arkansas State University.
He plans to retire from teaching vocational agriculture after 28 years of service, 11 years spent at Corning High School followed by 17 years at Hoxie High School. He has been named Agriculture Teacher of the Year three times by the Arkansas Vocational Agricultural Teacher's Association.
Ratliff has been involved in many civic and community projects on the local and state levels. He has served one term on the Lawrence County Quorum Court and has been a member of the Arkansas Vocational Agriculture Teacher's Association for the past 28 years.
He has served on the 4-H advisory board for 10 years and remains active in the Lawrence/Randolph Cattlemen Association. He has also helped the Lawrence County Fair receive two grants in the past year to use towards improving the fairgrounds and has served as president of the Lawrence County Fair the last 12 years.
In addition to teaching, Ratliff has been in the cattle business for 30 years.
Ratliff enjoys working with the public and has indicated that his work in education and agriculture, as well as with the youth of the area is an asset to the voters of the district.
"I have the time and the commitment to dedicate myself full-time to the citizens of District 73. I plan to work with the entire district and try to get everyone pulling the wagon in the same direction," said Ratliff.
"I pledge to the citizens of District 73 that I will work to bring in better jobs, while supporting the local school districts as well as all cities and towns by applying for grants and additional funding for local communities."
Ratliff is married to Georgia Ratliff who works for Sloan-Hendrix school. They have two children, Sherrie Johnson and husband, Shawn, of Imboden and Jamie DeJournett and wife, Amanda, of Maynard. They also have six grandchildren. Ratliff and his wife attend the First Baptist Church of Imboden.
"I hope to visit with the majority of the voters throughout District 73 seeking support," Ratliff said. "My pledge is to listen to and represent the people of District 73."
District 73 includes all of Lawrence County, a small protion of Greene County and the towns of Newark, Magness and Oil Trough in Independence County.
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