Dwight Pullen, 53, of Canton, formally entered the race Thursday for the state Senate District 14 contest to fill the vacancy left by Barry Loudermilk’s resignation to run for Congress next year.
“My career aspiration has not been to seek elected office. However, after much reflection, it’s clear that District 14 needs a representative who will effectively voice our concerns and expectations as issues are debated at the state Capitol,” Pullen said in making the announcement.
Pullen is retired from a career in education that included serving as principal of Teasley Middle School, Polaris Evening High School and Chapman Intermediate School in Cherokee County, as well as school superintendent of Chattooga County Schools from 2007 to 2011.
“I will advocate for more jobs and continued funding of education in our area. This is what I have always done,” Pullen said. “I will champion innovation and entrepreneurship. I see that this is where future jobs will be developed in our community.”
Pullen was selected by U.S. Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-Marietta) in 2011 to serve on the congressman’s Education Advisory Committee to keep Gingrey abreast of education issues and promote education in the district.
Pullen was 2007 Georgia PTA Principal of the Year, served as chairman of the Northwest Georgia Regional Educational Service Agency board of directors and was on the Chattahoochee Technical College Advisory Committee.
He also served as chairman of the City of Canton Planning and Zoning Commission from 1997 to 2007 and was a member of the Canton YMCA Board of Directors.
“I have served over 30 years as a teacher, curriculum director, principal at three different levels, superintendent of schools, and assistant professor. I have spent my entire adult life preparing young people for the future,” Pullen said. “Due to current economic conditions, it is imperative we work together to prepare the future for our young people.”
Among his top issues are to promote jobs in the district, better funding for education, more choices for parents without using tax dollars to promote for-profit schools and equal accountability for all schools.
Pullen also plans to address transportation issues and attract more local jobs to alleviate the need to travel.
He received a bachelor’s degree from Auburn University and master’s and doctorate degrees from the University of Georgia.