FRANKFORT — Louisville businessman Phil Moffett, who lost the 2011 Republican nomination for governor, is running for the state House of Representatives.
Moffett said Monday in a news release that he would run for the 32nd District seat in Jefferson County next year. It has been occupied since 2011 by Republican Julie Raque Adams, who said she was running for the state Senate's 36th District seat. The Senate seat will be open with the retirement of Sen. Julie Denton, R-Louisville.
Moffett had been mentioned as a possible candidate for governor in 2015, but he said Monday he won't enter that contest.
"I am interested in the state legislature, so that's where I am placing my attention," he said, adding that he would file Wednesday for the House seat.
Moffett will face former Jefferson County Republican Party chairwoman Shellie May in next spring's GOP primary election. May announced last month that she would run for the seat.
State Rep. Mary Lou Marzian, D-Louisville, said Monday that Ashley Miller of Louisville might seek the Democratic nomination in the 32nd House District.
Moffett ran for governor in 2011, coming within 10 percentage points in the GOP primary to then-state Senate President David Williams even though he was outspent 10 to 1. He had the support of several Tea Party groups.
Of his bid for the state House next year, Moffett said, "I look forward to serving the citizens of the 32nd House District and all Kentuckians as we face our commonwealth's seemingly perpetual problems of high unemployment, failing public schools, job-killing tax codes and mounting public debts, including one of the worst-funded public pension systems in the nation."
Moffett, a public school choice advocate and philanthropist, is the co-founder of CCS Partners, a telecommunications management firm.
He also co-founded School Choice Scholarships, a Louisville-based charity that has awarded more than 4,000 scholarships to low-income children to give them the opportunity to attend private elementary and middle schools chosen by their parents or guardians. He also helped a group of pastors in Louisville's west and south ends to establish after-school tutoring programs for students who have fallen behind.
Moffett and his wife of nearly 17 years, Christi Moffett, have four children and live in the Plainview neighborhood.
All 100 state House seats are up for election next year.