Sheila Butt

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Tennessee State Representative
Sheila Keckler Butt
Member of the Tennessee House of Representatives
from the 64th district
Assumed office
January 2010
Preceded by John 'Ty' Tyler Cobb[1]
Personal details
Born (1951-11-20) November 20, 1951 (age 63)
Rockford, Illinois
Citizenship USA
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Stan R. Butt
Children Stan Butt Jr.
Cliff Butt
Kyle Butt
Residence Columbia, Tennessee
Education B.S. English cum laude
Alma mater East Tennessee State University
Occupation Christian book author
motivational speaker
cattle marketer
Known for Tennessee House Majority Floor Leader, 2015
Committees House Criminal Justice Committee
House Education Instruction and Programs Committee
House Education Instruction and Programs Subcommittee
Religion Church of Christ

Sheila Keckler Butt is an American politician from Columbia, Tennessee.[2][3] State Rep. Butt is currently the Republican Majority Floor Leader of the Tennessee House of Representatives and she represents House District 64, encompassing the cities of Columbia, Mount Pleasant, and Spring Hill in parts of Maury County, Tennessee.[3][4]


Early life[edit]

Butt was born on November 20, 1951 in Rockford, Illinois.[3] Butt's father was a shoe salesman and later a car salesman, while her mother was described by Butt as a "domestic engineer". In the Keckler home that she shared with her parents and four siblings, Butt described her family that she grew up with as having "strong faith," but that her family never participated in organized religion.[5] Butt was also both a high school cheerleader and a high school newspaper editor.[5]

Butt also says in her book, Everyday Princess: Daughter of the King, that while she never drank alcohol or used drugs growing up, she did "date plenty of boys".[5] Those boys drew Butt to Tennessee Technological University where she said boys outnumbered girls 7-to-1. According to Butt, Tennessee Tech was fun, except for that frat party where she said a man pulled his pants down and danced behind her. "Needless to say, I decided that night that I would not be dancing at parties anymore," Butt wrote.[5] Butt wasn't always a Christian and did not make that decision until she was 20 years old, according to her book Everyday Princess: Daughter of the King. [5]

Butt later received a Bachelor of Science cum laude in English with a History minor from East Tennessee State University[3] and is also a 1980 Women’s Certificate Program graduate of the Bear Valley School of Biblical Studies.[6]


Butt was a co-founder and managing editor of S&S Bovine Images and also co-founder and managing editor of Tennessee Cattle Business, the official publication of the TN Cattlemen's Association[6] --- two companies focused on marketing and promoting the Tennessee cattle industry --- and she has served as a lecturer at Freed-Hardeman University and was a managing partner of MacInk Printers, Inc.[7][8]

Tennessee General Assembly[edit]

Butt serves as a member of the Tennessee House of Representatives.[3][4] She has sponsored HJR 199, a resolution to federal government to follow Tennessee model of a balanced budget, and co-sponsored HB0007 for Voter Identification.[4]

Butt controls her own political action committee that was started up for the 2014 elections in Tennessee, the Sheila's Liberty PAC of Columbia, Tennessee. According to Tennessee Online Campaign Finance database, the Sheila's Liberty PAC Treasurer is Jacob Love of Heritage Bank & Trust in Columbia, Tennessee.[9][10]

NAAWP Twitter Post[edit]

In her book Everyday Princess: Daughter of the King, Butt poised the following leading questions pertaining to biracial dating toward the young female readers on her book:

...Will dating someone of another race be helpful or beneficial? Understanding that you will eventually marry someone that you date, will you be just as happy for your children to grow up biracial? I have seen instances when a young lady started dating someone of another race, and there were those of her own race who were not interested in dating her after that.[11]

In a 2015 tweet critical of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Butt called for the creation of both a Council on Christian Relations and an NAAWP organization in the United States, presumably the National Association for the Advancement of White People,[12][13] a white nationalist organization that was formed in opposition to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, which itself was earlier formed during 1909.

Butt was reportedly commenting on an open letter from the Council on American-Islamic Relations urging potential Republican presidential candidates to reject Islamophobia and reach out to American Muslim voters. CAIR representatives stated the reference to "NAAWP" is an apparent racist twist to the name of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, or NAACP.[14]

The first NAAWP organization was originally incorporated on December 14, 1953 in Delaware by Bryant Bowles. In May 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that racially segregated public schools were unconstitutional. Bowles raised $6,000 and launched the National Association for the Advancement of White People to oppose the ruling and during the same year an article was written on the organization by Time magazine.[15]

During the latter half of 1954, Bowles held rallies and gave speeches in several different states. At one such rally Bowles is reported to have said that his daughter "will never attend a school with Negroes as long as there is breath in my body and gunpowder will burn." He briefly attracted nationwide attention for leading a pro-segregation boycott of Milford High School in Milford, Delaware. The ensuing racial unrest, which included cross burnings, contributed to desegregation in some parts of Delaware being delayed for another ten years. In September 1955, the Deputy Attorney General of Delaware took action to revoke the NAAWP corporate charter.

David Duke, 2008.

In 1979 David Duke left the Ku Klux Klan and incorporated a new NAAWP group taking the name of Bowles' defunct National Association for the Advancement of White People.[16][17] It was headquartered in Metairie in unincorporated Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, a suburb of New Orleans.

The NAAWP group has been desgnated by the Southern Poverty Law Center civil rights advocacy group as "racist" and identified as distributing "their own hateful propaganda" to white schoolchildren in America.[18] Butt is reportedly refusing to give any on-camera, televised interviews on the subject of her NAAWP remarks.[19]

Butt responded to the backlash resulting from her NAAWP statement in part by stating: “It saddens me that we have come to a place in our society where every comment by a conservative Christian is automatically scrutinized as being racist”. The Tennessee Black Caucus is now calling for both an apology and the removal of Rep. Butt from leadership in the Tennessee House of Representatives.[20]

Butt later deleted her NAAWP post on Twitter and said in response to suggestions that "NAAWP" was a racist abbreviation for the "National Association for the Advancement of White People," that she had been "misinterpreted" and was offended by the reaction from critics. Butt attempted to walk back her NAAWP Twitter post by stating she actually meant "National Association for the Advancement of Western Peoples" to be widely understood for her NAAWP Twitter post.[21]

Legal Abortion[edit]

Butt has been on the record as being opposed making exceptions for abortion waiting periods when the survivor has been a victim of incest or rape. During a 2015 debate in the House, Butt said that most instances of rape or incest are "not verifiable" and stated that an amendment brought to the House Floor to provide for exceptions for rape and incest victims "appears political".[22] Butt's remarks were criticized on the floor of the Tennessee House of Representatives as "dangerous and insulting" by TNGA Rep. Sherry Jones who in part stated,

Yesterday we heard a lot of unsettling things on the floor, from bogus descriptions of women's health clinics to a member of this body [TNGA Rep. Sheila Butt] actually saying that the violent crimes of rape and incest are, quote, not verifiable. There are 206,000 women in Tennessee who unfortunately can attest to the fact that rape and incest are too verifiable. Those women have endured horrors that we cannot imagine, and for it to be said the violent crimes they suffered are not verifiable is to suggest that they are somehow not legitimate rapes. That's dangerous and it is insulting to say the very least.[23][24]

Butt is a member of both the Tennessee Right to Life and the Maury County Right to Life and was a co-sponsor of the SJR0127 bill later approved by voters during 2014 as the Tennessee Amendment 1 ballot question.

Tennessee Humane Society[edit]

During 2014, Tennessee State Rep. Shelia Butt called for a state investigation by the Office of the Tennessee Attorney General and Reporter into fundraising practices of the Humane Society of the United States.[25]

According to Leighann Lassiter, the state director for HSUS in Tennessee, another legislator who has a contradictory voting record to Rep. Butt described Butt's actionas a public official against the HSUS as being a “purely political attack”.

Lassiter also claimed Butt used false information from the Internet in asking the state’s attorney general to launch an investigation. Butt has asked the attorney general to issue a “Consumer Alert” to raise public awareness about the group’s “potential fundraising abuses”.[25]

Butt contended that HSUS uses deceitful advertising to attract donors while using donations to pay “inflated salaries and promote a liberal anti-agriculture agenda.”

“It’s a purely political attack by an extreme lawmaker who doesn’t like our agenda to end horse soring and horse slaughter and dog fighting,” Lassiter said. “Rep. Butt opposes the mainstream values of cracking down on crime and protecting God’s creatures from cruelty.[25]

Personal life[edit]

Butt is married to Stan R. Butt, and has three children.[3]

Butt met Stan at Tennessee Technological University where married, and Sheila left school after one year to start working. After having sons Stan Jr., Cliff and Kyle with her husband and moving to Blountville, Tennessee, Butt returned to college in Johnson City, Tennessee at East Tennessee State University.[5]

Butt’s husband, Stan, preaches for the Anderson Bend Church of Christ in Duck River, Tennessee and was the Executive Director of the Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders' and Exhibitors' Association from 2007 to 2011.[5][26][27][28] The Environmental Working Group online farm subsidy database shows that Stan R. Butt received USDA Livestock Compensation Program Subsidies disaster payments of $527 during 2002.[29][30]

One of Butt's sons, Kyle Butt, is the director of Biblical Research at Apologetics Press in Montgomery, Alabama and is an editor of Discovery: A Monthly Christian Evidences Magazine for Kids magazine.[31][32]

Another of Butt's sons, Cliff Butt, was arrested by the Maury County Sheriff Department on May 7, 2015 for allegedly contributing to the delinquency of a minor with his buying alcohol for a 17-year-old Columbia Academy student who then brought the alcohol to an off-campus prom night party attended by twenty other Columbia Academy students who reportedly consumed beer at the event. Cliff Butt was jailed on one misdemeanor charge and later released from the Maury County Jail after posting a $1,500 bond[33] and he is scheduled to appear in court on the charge on June 10, 2015 in Mt. Pleasant, Tennessee.[34] Cliff Butt was previously serving as a youth minister at the Eastside Church of Christ (now the South Gate Church of Christ) of Columbia, Tennessee.[35]

Butt is a member of the Anderson Bend Church of Christ.[3]

Butt is also member of the National Rifle Association, the Tennessee Firearms Association, the Maury Alliance, the Fraternal Order of Police[3][4] and has served as Secretary of the Maury County Horsemen's Association.[6]

Butt has received the Kay Battles Service Award from Freed–Hardeman University and the Golden Pen Award from Publishing Designs in Huntsville, Alabama.[3][4]

Butt has authored and self-published several books presenting Biblical teachings for women, children and parents.[36][37]



  • Everyday Princess: Daughter of the King (book and DVD) Peaceful House Publishing, 2008. Columbia, Tennessee.[38]
  • Does God Love Michael’s Two Daddies (Montgomery, Alabama: Apologetics Press, 2006)[39]
  • Seeking Spiritual Beauty (book and DVD) Peaceful House Publishing, 2002. Huntsville, Alabama.[38]
  • No Greater Joy (book and DVD) Peaceful House Publishing, 1999. Huntsville, Alabama.[38]
  • If Thine Heart Be WIde Heart Wise Press, 1992. Columbia, Tennessee.[40]


  • We Bow Down: Women Look at Worship by Sheila Butt, Cindy Colley, Gloria Ingram, Jane McWhorter, Foye Watkins. 2002. ISBN 978-0929540283 Publishing Designs.[38]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Ty Cobb. Ballotpedia.
  2. ^ Tennessee Republican Party
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i Tennessee House of Representatives
  4. ^ a b c d e Official website
  5. ^ a b c d e f g Sheila Butt: I'm offended by reaction to comments. The Tennessean. March 6, 2015.
  6. ^ a b c 23 New Members of the 2011 TN General Assembly Senate District.
  7. ^ "2011 Incoming Legislators: 107th General Assembly: Tennessee House of Representatives New Members. The University of Tennessee Office of Government Relations.
  8. ^ Sheila Butt for State House District 64 of Tennessee - PollVault Profile.
  9. ^ SHEILAS LIBERTY PAC Non-Individual Overview. National Institute on Money in State Politics.
  10. ^ Reports for SHEILA'S LIBERTY PAC. Tennessee Online Campaign Finance.
  11. ^
  12. ^ Zelinsky, Andrea (February 25, 2015). "Politics Rep. Sheila Butt Says We Need an NAAWP". Nashville Scene. 
  13. ^ TN state Rep. Sheila Butt calls rape, incest 'not verifiable'
  14. ^ "Lawmaker's Facebook post with 'NAAWP' reference was racist".
  15. ^ "Education: Racial Flare-Up". Time. 11 October 1954. 
  16. ^ Bridges, Tyler (1995). The Rise of David Duke. University Press of Mississippi. p. 85. ISBN 978-0878056842. 
  17. ^,820625&dq=national-association-for-the-advancement-of-white-people&hl=en "David Duke to leave Klan". St. Petersburg Times. July 25, 1980. Retrieved 2015-05-17.
  18. ^ "Intelligence Report, Fall 2000, Issue Number: 100". Southern Poverty Law Center. Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  19. ^ "Sheila Butt Won't Apologize for NAAWP Comment - WZTV FOX 17 - Top Stories"
  20. ^ TN Rep. Johnnie Turner on TN Rep. Sheila Butt’s NAAWP comment.
  21. ^ "TN state Rep. Sheila Butt calls rape, incest 'not verifiable'".
  22. ^ Tennessee state Rep. Sheila Butts says rape claims are 'not verifiable'
  23. ^ Wadhwani, Anita; Boucher, Dave (April 22, 2015). "TN state Rep. Sheila Butt calls rape, incest 'not verifiable'". The Tennessean. 
  24. ^ TN state Rep. Sheila Butt calls rape, incest 'not verifiable'.
  25. ^ a b c Disagreements arise over humane society practices. By Vanessa Curry. The Daily Herald. September 3, 2014.
  26. ^ Sheila Butt, seeking to be a woman after God's own heart.
  27. ^ "Tennessee Walking Horse Assn Business Profile".
  28. ^ "2/10/11: Executive Director Stan Butt - Letter Resignation". Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders' and Exhibitors' Association (TWHBEA)
  29. ^ STAN R BUTT Farm Location(s).
  30. ^ STAN R BUTT Programs
  31. ^ "Kyle Butt". Apologetics Press.
  32. ^ "Apologetics Press - Rolling Over Evolution".
  33. ^ "Rep. Butt’s son goes to jail"
  34. ^ "Police: Rep. Butt's son bought alcohol for 17-year-old"
  35. ^ "Leadership at Eastside Church of Christ".
  36. ^ [1]
  37. ^ Heartwise Press.
  38. ^ a b c d Sheila Butt, seeking to be a woman after God's own heart. Retrieved from the Internet Archive.
  39. ^ Google Books
  40. ^ Freed-Harderman University Draughon Library.