Who Deserves Your Vote for District 105 in Georgia's House of Representatives?

Two Republicans and two Democrats qualified for the July 31 primaries for the District 105 open seat in the Georgia House of Representatives. The winner in each party will face off in the November General Election.

As a result of the last Census, Georgia's House of Representatives has a new seat located in Gwinnett County. District 105 is an open seat, to be voted on for the first time this election cycle. There are two Republicans and two Democrats vying for the position. The winner in the July 31 Republic Primary out of , of Grayson, and of Lawrenceville, will face the winner in the Democratic Primary between and Rashid Malik, both of Lawrenceville.

The following is a brief bio and response to questions from each of the candidates. Malik’s response has not yet been received, but will be added as soon as it is. There is also a poll that follows, asking which of the candidates you believe deserves your vote.

The following questions were posed to each candidate.

1.  What are your professional qualifications for the office you seek? 

2.   What is the biggest problem facing your potential constituents in this area and how do you think you can best address it if elected?

3.   Each of you have one primary opponent, what makes you better qualified than him or her to move on to the General Election in November?

4.   What made you decide to seek this office?

5.   Give a brief wrap up on why you think the voters should elect you for the job?

Republican Primary Candidates

Damon Ladd-Thomas, 41, Grayson

Occupation: Business Owner/Investment

Website: www.vote4damon.com

E-Mail: damon@vote4damon.com

1.  I am a Business Owner, Financial Advisor, Small Business Consultant and Advocate in this district. My degree is in Economics and I live here, work here, coach here, and founded the local Georgia Commerce Club to help support local businesses.

2.   We have a residential and commercial real estate problem in this district that is hampering economic growth, the look of our communities, and revenue for our county and state.  This is negatively affecting local job creation, economic growth, and the budgets for our schools.  Our solution is to initially reduce inhibiting legislation and bureaucratic red tape for any ideas that can positively impact our communities.

3.   We have been on the ground from Loganville, through Grayson, to Lawrenceville and beyond helping businesses and residents looking for support and solutions.  I have a youthful, can-do positive attitude and I am ready to be the voice of this district for many years to come. I have a 10-year plan on legislation that will positively impact the new House District 105.

4.   I was called upon by my peers, neighbors, family, local business owners and My Party to impart our common sense solutions-based approach to issues and continue our efforts in moving this area forward not only through our non-profit but through participation as a Representative in our State Government.

5.   We need uniquely new ideas for our ever changing area that can compete and work congruently with, the future legislation in the State House. Government should always support and never hinder or create obstacles for its residents, investors, and businesses.  In this Primary, there is no one more invested in this community, its schools, and the local economy than I.  When elected, I will continue to be completely available to all of my constituents for all of their concerns and ideas to keep Gwinnett Great. 


Joyce Chandler, 71, Lawrenceville

Occupation:    Retired Professional School Counselor

Email:    jhchandler@bellsouth.net

1.  I am a retired teacher and counselor with 30 years experience.  For the past five years, I have served as Executive Director of a state nonprofit organization.  There is much I will have to learn as a representative; but having written a dissertation, I know how to do research and consider all variables involved with an issue. 

2.  The biggest problem facing our community is the weak economy.  If elected, I pledge to work with other representatives to develop a more business-friendly environment.  This will enhance economic growth and thus bring more jobs to our area and state.   

3.  My experience in education and in keeping a non-profit organization alive during these difficult financial times results in my being well-prepared to serve as the representative from our district.  I understand the budgeting process and the necessity for living within a budget and also know how to listen and learn from others. 

4.  Throughout my career, I have served others;  I now seek an opportunity to be a public servant.  And I do see our elected officials as just that – servants to the people who elect them.  I believe that my experience will allow me to make a difference in our state legislature. 

5.  My faith governs my ethics and morals and my life, and I believe that Godly principles and values must be consistently demonstrated by our elected officials. I pledge to represent the people of District 105 with integrity and honesty. As a grandmother of eight, I want to do everything I can to secure a bright future for the young people of Georgia!


Democratic Primary Candidates

Renita Hamilton, 37, Lawrenceville

Occupation:    Event Planner and Wedding Coordinator

Website:   www.voterenitahamilton.org

Email:    renita@voterenitahamilton.org

1.   My professional qualifications are I am knowledgeable on how to pass, amend, and repeal laws. Bachelors in Communications and Masters in Strategic Leadership degrees, nine years as a Small Business Owner, and eight years in Commercial/Residential Real Estate, Investment, and Hospitality. Level-headed, Respectable, and Decisive all qualities I possess. 

2.  The biggest problems facing my constituents in Georgia House District 105 are job opportunities, small business support, and education cuts. I am the best to address these needs because I have a job creation plan, small business initiative, and goal to restore education funding. Teachers need a raise.

3.  My primary opponent is an intelligent and well respected, and a knowledgeable Democrat. With regard to me, I am a person that is highly qualified. I excel in leadership, embrace bipartisanship, and to elect me as State Representative November 6th is best for Georgia House District 105.

4.  I decided to seek the office of State Representative for Georgia House District 105 because this great nation is one that allows ordinary citizens such as me to represent the will of the people and add an “on the ground” solutions-based voice into the legislative process.

5. I believe that the voter’s should elect me for the job because it is my job is to make sure their voices are heard and the voter’s interests are represented at Georgia State Capitol.  I will serve at the will of the people.  Just like the voters, I want solutions.


Rashid Malik, Lawrenceville

Email: DrMalikForSenate@yahoo.com

There is no other information from the Secretary of State’s website for Malik. However, a website when he ran for Georgia Senate District 9 in 2010 gives the following bio.

BA Political Science with minor in Economics, Truman Sate University, Masters Degree & PhD, University of Kansas, Lawrenceville resident for over 10 years, Author: Chinese Entrepreneurs in the Economic Development of China, Former Lecturer, American Intercontinental University, Founder of Malik College (educational institute), Strong advocate for education and fiscal discipline

Damon Ladd-Thomas June 27, 2012 at 10:54 PM
Thank You Bradford. No worries. We obviously know the cost of time and volunteer resources disappearing signs can be. See you out on the campaign trail. -Damon
Mark Bove June 29, 2012 at 02:34 AM
Chandler...I admire how dedicated you are to the support of your grandmothers campaign. I'm sure she is a wonderfully honest and trusting individual and you must be proud of her. However I was quite concerned about the comment you made that stated, "We are not thinking about the future." Why would a person make the effort to campaign for a political office and not be concerned with the future? As a nation, we've been challenged with many unfortunate circumstances and on a local level, Gwinnett County continues to be one of the most damaged counties in the nation for housing foreclosures. We need a candidate that can offer us more than just the comforting, compassionate approach of a loving grandmother. We need a candidate who has proven, successful business experience. A candidate who is actively involved in community affairs with a focus on future economic growth. A candidate who understands the needs of today's young families. Damon Ladd-Thomas possesses all those skills. As a business owner and resident in the district, Damon understands the needs of struggling business owners and families. With Damon's efforts, he has helped countless businesses achieve success. He understands the educational challenges of today's brand of government schools and he has an energy that is required to meet the needs of an elected official under the gold dome. Given the facts it's quite clear that Damon is the right choice to support the businesses and residents of district 105.
Richard Nawyn July 13, 2012 at 09:53 PM
My vote is for Joyce Chandler! Beyond the charm is a very hard working woman!!!
Mark Bove July 31, 2012 at 12:35 AM
Chandler, I expected a more mature reply from you. Your reply was very childish and had a tone I'd expect from a liberal. Without an eye on the future you have nothing by which to base a political platform. Entering office with no plan will provide the residents and businesses in district 105 with nothing but a regressive future. We need someone with leadership qualities who can navigate this county into an era of significant economic growth. Residents and businesses that I've spoken with want a young, fresh approach to the representation in this district. They want a candidate with energy, vigor & vitality. Someone who won't get eaten up alive as a freshman under the gold dome. My candidate possesses those qualities. He's organized, focused, very energetic, has a solid plan and is a true constitutional republican. I'm not sure I would want this kind of pressure and stress placed upon my grandmother. At a certain time in ones existence, it becomes a quality of life benefit to retire from work and enjoy the family, spoil the grand kids, offer up time to the church and visit places that may be on the bucket list. I don't know what the final result will be from the election tomorrow but I do know that I am voting for the candidate who I am convinced will best represent us with an energetic, fresh, and knowledgable approach to the current day needs of the residents and businesses in district 105. I am voting for DAMON LADD-THOMAS.
Mark Bove August 01, 2012 at 11:25 AM
Chandler...I congratulate Joyce on her win! Now on to the general election where she'll face a strong liberal opponent. If she wins the general election I will be one of the voters in district 105 who will hold Joyce's feet to the fire and expect to be represented in the capitol based on fundamental principles of economics driven by a plan that ignites growth. A warm smile and a basket of cookies isn't enough to get the job done. As for you, Chandler, perhaps between now and the general election, someone in your family can teach you something about humility. If your behavior is consistent with the rest of the people on Joyce's team then she'll have a tough time winning in November. I am a voter, don't forget that!


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