January 25, 2013 12:00:35 PM
Jeff Clark - [email protected]
Hot on the heels of Wednesday's announcement by West Point resident Rev. Eddie Longstreet, Aberdeen resident Dr. Roderick Van Daniel announced Thursday he will also be seeking the vacated 36th District House seat left open after the Jan. 13 death of Rep. David Gibbs.
Van Daniel, who was once a page for the late Gibbs, said if elected he plans to concentrate on economic development.
"Economic development is the means (by) which our citizens that graduate from our high schools, trade schools, community colleges, universities and professional schools will have a place to come home to versus having to move to another state," Van Daniel said. "Economic development is important to the fabric of our communities which would develop our infrastructure to become strong with the belief that all citizens can work and give back leadership and mentoring to our children (who) will become leaders of tomorrow."
Van Daniel, a graduate of Mississippi State University with a doctorate in rural community college leadership and a master's degree in sports marketing, said he will also work for judicial reform for the state.
"I believe fair treatment of the judicial system for all races, genders, and nationality is important to maintaining a dynamic community," he said. "Everyone should know the laws of this state and how (they are) related to your everyday journey of life in Mississippi and our counties of Monroe, Clay and Lowndes."
Van Daniel joins Longstreet and Gibbs' son, Karl, in the race for the 36th District House seat. Gibbs served the district for more than 20 years.
A special election date has not yet been set by Gov. Phil Bryant.