Tag Archives: district 7

Campfield Gets a GOP Primary Challenger

Knox County Commissioner Richard Briggs, a cardiothoracic surgeon and retired Army colonel, said Friday he intends to seek the 7th District Senate seat held by Stacey Campfield, reports Georgiana Vines. He has named former County Commissioner Frank Leuthold as his treasurer.
Briggs said he had been having weekly meetings with prospective supporters for several months and didn’t intend to make any announcements quite this soon for an election in 2014.
But with Campfield making news in Nashville with some of his proposed legislation, “it’s fair to say, everything was coming to a head. I was starting to get calls from people. We thought we should go ahead and pull the trigger and start rallying people,” he said.
Briggs and Campfield are Republicans. Briggs’ naming of Leuthold with the Tennessee Registry of Election Finance allows him to start raising money for a campaign for the Republican primary on Aug. 7, 2014.
Campfield did not return a phone call seeking comment on Briggs’ potential candidacy.
Briggs, 60, had told the News Sentinel in September he was considering the race.
He and his wife, Stephanie, have bought a condo on Lanesborough Way in the 7th District where they vote, although they still use a house she owns on Breakwater Drive on the lake, he said.
Briggs has been on County Commission since 2008.
Campfield, in his first term as senator after serving in the state House, is his own treasurer, according to the state registry. The latest financial disclosures report filed Jan. 31 showed he had $11,386 in his campaign account.


Note: Brian Stevens, 30, a statistics professor at the University of Tennessee, had previously announced as a Democratic candidate for Campfield’s seat. A Metro Pulse profile of Stevens and his campaign is HERE.

Campfield Challenger Gets Early Attention

Brian Stevens, who has already launched a campaign for the Democratic nomination to oppose Republican state Sen. Stacey Campfield in 2014, is the subject of a lengthy political profile piece in this week’s Metro Pulse.
The tall and strapping Stevens embarked on this venture earlier in the year and took advantage of the campaign season to get his message out early to likely voters. He’ll need those two years, he says, if he wants to win the state Senate District 7 seat.
“If no one’s ever heard of me, they’re going to reject me,” he says. “We have to fill in that blank. And then I come in and create the rest. It’s hard. Beating Stacey Campfield is not going to be an easy job.”
Stevens, 30, is a statistics professor at the University of Tennessee. This semester, he’s also picked up a math class he’s never taught before–and he’s learning the material right along with his students. He says he reads the textbook himself and works out the example problems before teaching a lesson. If a student asks him a question he can’t answer, he tells him or her he’ll look it up himself. On top of his bachelor’s degree in psychology and master’s in business analytics, he’s worked a slew of unrelated jobs, including working on an archaeological dig in Texas. In college, he was a member of the student government.
“I’ve had positions of authority and leadership,” he says. “My experience is there for my age.”
Stevens will run on the Democratic ticket, but mostly for the purposes of raising his odds against Campfield.
“I know a third-party candidate will only increase Stacey Campfield’s chances. And it’s not so much about party because it is about me as a person,” he says.
Stevens and his supporters don’t use the word “Democrat” to describe him very often; they prefer “social libertarian/fiscal moderate.” In fact, “Democrat” isn’t used on his official website or on his Facebook page.
…Though Stevens’ platform is fairly typical of Democratic ideals–it includes support for environmental protections, marriage equality, and more efficient education strategies–he says he would defer to Haslam’s business knowledge when it comes to creating jobs.
“He knows what will bring business here. And I think it’s great we have a businessman as a governor,” Stevens says.