By Rienzi Gray
Republican Clay Deweese will be running against Democratic candidate, Tiffany Kilpatrick, in the general election for the District 12 seat in the Mississippi House of Representatives on Nov. 5, 2019.
Oxford business owner and University of Mississippi graduate, Deweese hopes to be the voice of his community in the upcoming election.
“I like to serve; I’ve always had a heart for service,” Deweese said. “This opportunity will give me the chance to represent my community and take their message to the capitol.”
The Republican candidate believes one of the greatest issues facing Oxford is infrastructural. If elected, Deweese plans to obtain support from the state to help with growth management while also representing the public schools.
“Like real estate, politics is a relationship business,” Deweese said. “I know how to take, create, cultivate, and maintain relationships with others to get things accomplished.”
Although Deweese makes no political promises to his supporters, he promises to build relationships with state leadership to make sure that Oxford is represented.
“Oxford needs a seat at the table,” Deweese said. “I’m the candidate who could give us a seat.”
Deweese, 37, husband and proud father of two, is a 2004 graduate of the Ole Miss Business School. He obtained his real estate license shortly after graduation and is now the owner of Nix-Tann Associates in Oxford.
Ole Miss Law graduate and former professor, Tiffany Kilpatrick, seeks to increase public school funding if elected to seat at the Mississippi House of Representatives.
“My biggest issue with public education,” Kilpatrick said. “We are not fully funding our public education systems.”
Kilpatrick wants to make certain that the Mississippi Adequate Education Program (MAEP) standards are met in the public education system. She believes that public schools in Mississippi are not being fully funded according to MAEP. MAEP is the law that provides formulas to ensure that every child in Mississippi receives an adequate education.
“My mother was a lifetime public school teacher, I’m public-school educated, and my son goes to public school,” Kilpatrick said. “That is my main concern.”
The north Mississippi native hopes to make public school funding a priority. At the state level, she believes that the right voice will be the difference in receiving adequate state funding for public schools across all of Mississippi and getting teachers raises.
Locally, Kilpatrick wants to tackle the infrastructural and road work that Oxford requires.
Kilpatrick, 41, credits her candidacy to her passion for state politics and love for law. She serves as the Public Defender of Lafayette County at the felony level, the Public Defender for Youth Court, the prosecutor for Abbeville, and she owns the Kilpatrick Law Firm. She is the mother of one, Rhex.