Deborah Gonzalez, an Athens attorney, has announced that she will seek the Democratic Party nomination for Georgia House District 117, which includes three Oconee County precincts.
Regina Quick, a Republican, currently represents the 117th in the Georgia House of Representatives. Quick, also an Athens attorney, has not said if she intends to seek re-election in 2018.
The 117th House District includes three of Oconee County’s 13 precincts, Athens Academy, Malcom Bridge and Bogart, as well as small parts of Barrow and Jackson counties.
The dominant part of the 117th district is in Athens-Clarke County.
According to her web site, Gonzalez plans to focus on health, education, jobs and Internet security and Information Technology infrastructure.
|Gonzalez On Web Site|
Gonzalez has been an attorney for more than 20 years, focusing on media and entertainment and on social media and technology. She graduated from New York Law School and is licensed to practice in New York and Georgia.
Her book, “Managing Online Risk: Apps, Mobile, and Social Media Security,” was published by Elsevier in 2015.
In a blog post, Gonzalez said she is running because “We need to flip this seat so we can be at the table.”
“So many decisions concerning our lives in this country and state are being made without consideration of the different perspectives of different citizens,” Gonzalez wrote. “We are all Americans. We all need to be heard.”
The Republican-controlled legislature split Oconee County between the 117th and 119th House districts following the 2010 Census to increase the chances that Republicans could hold both seats.
Clarke County is the largest part of both districts, but the 119th District is nearly equally divided between the two counties and is represented by Chuck Williams, an Oconee County Republican.
At the most recent meeting of the Oconee County Republican Party, Williams said that he has observed in recent months “a very energized, fired up, group of Democrats, progressives, liberals, whatever label you want to use, in our area.”
Williams said if the "group" remains energized it could have impact on upcoming local elections.
Neither Williams nor Quick has had primary or general election opposition.
Oconee County Democrats will host a workshop at its meeting on June 20 to help inform people about the process of running for office.
Participants will be Norman Garrett, Monroe Council member and Walton County Democratic Party chair, Spencer Frye, a Democrat who represents Athens-Clarke County in House District 118, and Penny Mills from Oconee County.
Mills, who holds a doctorate in political science, ran unsuccessfully for the Oconee County Board of Commissioners in the Republican primary last spring.
The meeting will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Government Annex Building on SR 15 on the south side of Watkinsville.