Terry Brown (Louisiana politician)

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Terry Ralph Brown
Louisiana State Representative for
District 22 (Grant, La Salle, Natchitoches, Red River, and Winn parishes)
Assumed office
January 2012
Preceded by Billy Chandler
Personal details
Born August 20, 1946
Place of birth missing
Political party Independent
Spouse(s) Lou Altazan Brown (married c. 1988)
Children Ann-Elizabeth Brown
Parents Ralph Edison and June Hafer Brown
Residence Colfax, Grant Parish
Louisiana, USA
Alma mater Northwestern State University
Occupation Retired state employee

Terry Ralph Brown (born August 20, 1946) is, as of August 2017, one of three current Independent members of the Louisiana House of Representatives.[1] A resident of Colfax in Grant Parish, Brown claimed the reconfigured District 22 seat in North Louisiana by unseating in the general election held on November 19, 2011 the Democrat-turned-Republican incumbent Billy Chandler of Dry Prong, also in Grant Parish.[2]

Background[edit]

Brown is one of three children of June Hafer Brown (1920-2003) and Ralph Edison Brown (1916-2002), who fought in both theaters of World War II and was employed by the Veterans Administration medical center in Pineville. The senior Brown was an area commander of the American Legion and active in the Boy Scouts of America in south Grant Parish. Both Browns are interred at Colfax Cemetery. Terry Brown's siblings are Michael L. Brown of Colfax and Jimmie Brown Ballard of Camden, Arkansas.[3]

Brown holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in professional education from Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. Active in the Grant Parish community, he is a charter member of the Louisiana Pecan Festival Association and a vice chairman of the Grant Parish Library Board. Brown is a member of the United Methodist Church. He and his wife, the former Lou Altazan, have a daughter, Ann-Elizabeth Brown (born c. 1990).[4][5]

Brown's uncle, Daniel Wallace "Dan" Brown (born 1941) of Colfax, only five years his senior,[3] is a son-in-law of the late District 22 state representative, Richard S. Thompson, a Democrat from Colfax who served from 1972 to 1984.[2]

Legislative career[edit]

In the nonpartisan blanket primary held in October 2011, a third candidate, Republican businessman James Timothy "Tim" Murphy of Natchitoches, previously from Montgomery in Grant Parish, polled 3,666 votes (25.9 percent), sufficient to force a runoff between Chandler, who led with 5,790 (40.8 percent) and Brown, who polled 4,724 (33.3 percent).[6] Brown then unseated Chandler, 6,015 (52.4 percent) to 5,465 (47.6 percent). He lost only in the combined eight precincts in Natchitoches Parish within the district.[7]

Brown sits on these House committees: (1) Administration of Criminal Justice, (2) Municipal, Parochial and Cultural Affairs, and (3) Transportation, Highways, and Public Works. He is also a member of the Louisiana Rural Caucus.[4] Brown holds a 60 percent rating from the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry.[8]

Brown opposes the controversial Common Core State Standards Initiative, which was first supported by Governor Bobby Jindal, who then reversed his position on the issue. Brown told a public forum in Alexandria that some of his constituents have children who are "literally pulling their hair out" or faking illnesses because of frustration with Common Core. Brown said that 84 percent of his constituents oppose Common Core. The lawmaker criticized Louisiana Education Superintendent John White for insistence on keeping Common Core. Brown said that he favors returning to an elected state superintendent who unlike White would be "answerable to the people."[9]

Brown campaign sign (2015)

In his bid for re-election to the state House in the October 24, 2015, non-partisan blanket primary, Brown defeated a Republican challenge from John Robert Stephens, I (born August 1970), of Jena in LaSalle Parish. Brown polled 6,627 votes (52.4 percent) to Stephens' 6,026 (47.6 percent).[10]

Brown is the author of House Bill 11 (2016), which if implemented would halt open burning of munitions or explosive waste. Such burning is underway at the company Clean Harbors Colfax, which is located five miles northwest of Colfax. The neighboring Rapides Parish Police Jury approved a resolution opposing Brown's bill. Juror Richard Vanderlick explained that Brown's measure "might shut that operation down, and that's going to cause some [eight to ten] people to lose their jobs.” Brown insisted that the open burning is a health hazard and must be stopped.[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ The other Independent legislators are Jerome "Dee" Richard of Thibodaux, Louisiana, and Joseph Marin III of Jefferson Parish.
  2. ^ a b "Membership of the Louisiana House of Representatives, 1812-2016" (PDF). house.louisiana.gov. Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Ralph Edison Brown". findagrave.com. Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b "Representative Terry Brown". votesmart.org. Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  5. ^ "Terry R. Brown, I-District 22". ciclt.net. Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Louisiana primary election returns, October 22, 2011". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  7. ^ "State Representative -- 22nd Representative District results, November 19, 2011". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Representative Terry R. Brown". Louisiana Association of Business and Industry. Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  9. ^ Richard P. Sharkey (April 10, 2015). "Central La. legislators: Get rid of Common Core". The Alexandria Town Talk. Retrieved April 11, 2015. 
  10. ^ "Results for Election Date: 10/24/2015". Louisiana Secretary of State. Retrieved October 25, 2015. 
  11. ^ Richard P. Sharkey (March 22, 2016). "Rep. Brown: Rapides not being 'good neighbor' to Grant". The Alexandria Town Talk. Retrieved March 24, 2016. 
Louisiana House of Representatives
Preceded by
Billy Chandler
Louisiana State Representative for District 22 (Grant, La Salle, Natchitoches, Red River, and Winn parishes)

Terry Ralph Brown
2012–

Succeeded by
Incumbent