By MARY RAINWATER
Citing a dedication to public service and a desire to make a difference for his constituents, longtime county resident Michael W. Lumpkins has announced his run as the sole Republican candidate for Anderson County Precinct 2 Commissioner on the March 4 primary ballot.
“I am a conservative Republican who still believes that local government matters and that the people of this county still have a voice,” Lumpkins said. “I have strong Christian and family values and believe in leading with honesty and integrity.
“As commissioner, I think it is important to maintain the local county roads and address any concerns in a timely manner,” he added, “but it is just as important to be good stewards of the county's money and avoid wasteful spending.”
Lumpkins came to Anderson County in 1998, where he was employed by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice for 23 years — serving 19 of those as a supervisor before retiring as a captain in December of 2011.
In 2005, Lumpkins began part-time work with the Anderson County Sheriff's Office as a jailer, and upon his retirement from TDCJ, began working full time for the county.
“As part of job with TDCJ, we had emergency drills and developed a proactive approach to handling a problem,” he said. “That is the same for commissioners, who have a responsibility to make sure they are prepared and that they and their employees are ready to handle any disaster.
“It is also important to provide a safe environment, not just for our residents, but for employees as well,” he added. “The community doesn't serve us, we serve them, and we need to make ourselves accessible at all times.”
Lumpkins sees big things for the future of Anderson County, particularly in the area of economic growth, and says he desires to see more unity among county and city leadership to make that growth even more successful.
“With the incoming Sanderson Farms and the railroad purchasing the old Alcoa plant, I think this area is fixing to explode,” he said. “I want to be part of the process, not just now, but in the future.
“I want to see all the people working together with one common — goal to improve and promote positive economic growth,” he added. “We all play an active part and it starts right here at home. I would be honored to be one of your leaders to help feed Anderson County in present and future endeavors.”
Lumpkins' decision to run for public office was not one he took lightly, he said.
“I talked with my wife and sought the Lord in prayer, had quiet time and asked for guidance,” he said. “I felt like he gave me a release to seek this position.
“If it all ended tomorrow and they tallied the votes, no matter the outcome I feel like I have still won because I have been able to expand my territory — to talk to people I have not met before, to witness to them and get a heartbeat for the community.”
Lumpkins is the son of Richard and Patricia Lumpkins of Copperas Cove. He graduated from Copperas Cove High School in 1980 and attended college at Central Texas College in Killeen.
Lumpkins and his wife wife of 13 years, Amanda, who works as a maintenance coordinator for TDCJ, have a home and property in Anderson County, sharing five children and three grandchildren. The couple attend Cedar Creek Missionary Baptist Church on ACR 322.
“I'm just a simple guy. I want to do the best for my family, kids, grandkids,” he said. “I believe in local government. I am conservative. I want to be a good steward of the county's money. I just want to do the right thing.”
Lumpkins, the lone Republican candidate on the March primary ballot, will face incumbent Democrat Rashad Q. Mims I in the November election.
For more information, call Lumpkins at 903-948-8293 or 903-948-8294.