Democratic state Sen. Dennis Parrett mulling run for Kentucky agriculture commissioner

jbrammer@herald-leader.comAugust 27, 2014 

Democratic state Sen. Dennis Parrett

FRANKFORT — Dennis Parrett, a Democratic state senator from Elizabethtown, said he is "definitely considering" running for state agriculture commissioner in 2015.

Parrett said Wednesday he will decide within the next few weeks whether to enter the race that already has attracted one Democratic candidate, Jean-Marie Lawson Spann.

"I have an interest in seeing agriculture move forward in this state," said Parrett, who has represented the 10th Senate district in Hardin County and part of Jefferson County since 2011.

Parrett, who will turn 55 on Oct. 30, had no opposition in this year's primary and general elections for his legislative seat. He is a farmer and the co-owner of Cecilia Farm Service in Hardin County.

He is a former agriculture extension agent in Hardin and Nelson counties and holds a bachelor's of science degree in agricultural economics from the University of Kentucky.

Jean-Marie Lawson Spann, a Democrat who is the host of a weekly radio show about farm news in Kentucky, announced her plans in June to run for state agriculture commissioner next year.

She is vice president of marketing for Lawson Marketing Inc. and a former vice president of marketing for Hartland Equipment in Bowling Green.

Asked about Lawson Spann, Parrett said "I would not be running against her. I would be running for the office."

Lawson Spann said in an email that she is focused on running her campaign.

"I have a plan to recruit and grow markets for our farmers' products, to grow jobs and to improve Kentucky's economy," she said. "I do not think it is appropriate for me to comment about someone who is not officially committed to running for the office."

The current state agriculture commissioner, Republican James Comer, has decided to run next year for governor. He plans to officially announce his candidacy and running mate Sept. 9 in his hometown of Tompkinsville.

Jack Brammer: (502) 227-1198. Twitter: @BGPolitics. Blog: bluegrasspolitics.bloginky.com

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