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Ag commissioner candidate rolls out campaign, endorsements

Ag commissioner candidate rolls out campaign, endorsements

by Joe Arnold

WHAS11.com

Posted on June 18, 2014 at 11:20 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jun 18 at 11:24 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- A Bowling Green marketing executive who hosts a weekly radio show about agriculture announced her candidacy on Wednesday in the 2015 Democratic primary for Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner.

Jean-Marie Lawson Spann is rolling out her campaign with stops Wednesday through Saturday in 11 Kentucky communities.  She would become Kentucky's first female agriculture commissioner.

Lawson Spann, 36, is the daughter of Beverly and Sam Lawson, veteran farm equipment dealers in Bowling Green.

"I have basically been preparing for this race and to serve all of you in this position since birth," Lawson Spann said in a 14 minute video released on Wednesday.



Lawson Spann said she would work to expand and create markets for Kentucky agricultural products, expand both educational opportunities and farm safety programs, and allow the purchase of FFA license plates to anyone in the commonwealth.  Lawson Spann said she supports the current administration's push to reintroduce industrial hemp.

Current Agriculture Commissioner James Comer, a Republican, is expected to run for Governor in 2015.

Other Democrats considering the race include Roger Thomas, Executive Director of the Governor's Office of Agricultural Policy and Sen. Dennis Parrett (D-Elizabethtown).
 
Two former Kentucky Commissioners of Agriculture joined Lawson Spann at her initial announcement, Ed Logsdon and Billy Ray Smith, a friend of Lawson Spann's parents who was Best Man at their wedding. Smith also appears on the video released by Lawson Spann's campaign. A third former Agriculture commissioner, David Boswell, is also endorsing her.

"Jean-Marie has a great passion for helping people," Smith said, adding that Lawson Spann is the right person at the right time.

Her campaign said Lawson Spann is endorsed by three former Kentucky governors, Julian Carroll, Martha Layne Collins and Paul Patton.

Lawson Spann hosts a weekly radio show about agriculture.

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