Press Releases

Haslam Announces ‘Business Leaders For Haslam’ Coalition

Press Release from Bill Haslam for Governor, March 18, 2010:

Business leaders from across the state come together to back Knoxville Mayor’s gubernatorial run

KNOXVILLE – More than 200 business leaders from across Tennessee joined together today to endorse Republican gubernatorial candidate and Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam because they believe he has the proven executive experience and conservative fiscal leadership needed at this critical time.

“Bill Haslam is the only candidate in this race who has helped create thousands of jobs. First he grew and expanded the family business as President of Pilot Travel Centers, and then he recruited new jobs to Knoxville as Mayor. He understands how jobs are created,” said Allen Morgan of Memphis. “While other candidates are more concerned about gimmicks and concerts, Bill is focused on a three-week jobs tour. Tennesseans concerned about maintaining and recruiting jobs should enthusiastically support Mayor Haslam. I do.”

The announcement of “Business Leaders for Haslam” came during the second week of Haslam’s three-week Jobs Tour, and the coalition is a clear indication business leaders statewide know the two-term Mayor of Knoxville, who was reelected in 2007 with 87 percent of the vote, is the only candidate with proven experience at promoting business and growing and retaining jobs.

Republican candidates for governor say the first issue they hear about on the campaign trail is jobs, but Mayor Haslam is the only candidate making the focused effort to listen to small business owners and economic development leaders across the state and to share ideas about how to retain and grow good, well-paying jobs here in Tennessee.

Many Tennesseans also are concerned about the budget shortfalls that await the next governor and believe Bill Haslam is best suited to deal with those issues. “I have been impressed with Mayor Haslam’s stewardship of Knoxville. And he’s the only candidate in this race who has had to create and implement a budget, the same way he’ll have to do as governor,” said Newt Raff of Johnson City. “He’s the only candidate with that critical experience.”

Others are focused on the leadership qualities necessary to be governor. “Bill Haslam has the executive temperament to lead our state. We need a governor with a calm confidence and business experience, who understands the big issues facing Tennessee, and who knows when to listen and when to lead – that’s Bill Haslam,” commented Joe Decosimo of Chattanooga.

Still others focused on the importance of education to attracting and maintaining good jobs. “Improving our public education system is critically important to our long-term economic security,” said Tom Cigarran of Nashville. “Bill Haslam understands that education is key to attracting and maintaining good jobs.”

“Bill Haslam provides Tennesseans incredibly successful business and civic credentials wrapped around a genuine care for every single citizen in our state. That’s an absolute fact,” added Kitty Moon Emery of Nashville. “I feel strongly we’re at the right time with a perfect leader to successfully tackle the challenges ahead.”

“Crissy and I are incredibly grateful for the support we’ve received over the last 14 months,” Haslam said. “It’s support like this – for our plans such as creating jobs base camps and leveraging unique regional assets to create specific development strategies – that affirms we’re doing this for the right reasons: to strengthen our state and get Tennesseans working again.”

“Tennessee’s strength is in its communities, and we have a lot to sell here: no income tax, right to work, incredible natural beauty and a strong work ethic,” Haslam continued. “With the backing of these business leaders who contribute jobs and stability to our local economies, we can work to ensure that Tennessee becomes the No. 1 location in the Southeast for stable, well-paying jobs.”

A hardworking, conservative public servant, Haslam led Knoxville to become one of the top ten metropolitan areas for business and expansion, while reducing the city’s debt, tripling the rainy day fund, and bringing property taxes to the lowest rate in more than 50 years. An executive leader with a proven record of success, he helped grow his family’s small business from 800 employees into one of Tennessee’s largest companies with 14,000 employees. His combination of executive and public service experience makes him uniquely qualified to be Tennessee’s next Governor.

Bill and Crissy Haslam have two daughters, Annie and Leigh, and a son, Will, who resides in Knoxville with his wife, Hannah.

For more information on Bill Haslam’s Jobs Tour, please visit, and for information on Bill and his campaign, please visit

Business Leaders for Haslam Coalition

· Matt Alexander, Blount County

· Chris Allison, Madison County

· David Amonette, Sumner County

· Charlie Anderson, Jr., Knox County

· Leo Arnold, Dyer County

· Max Arnold, Carroll County

· Sammie Arnold, Madison County

· Tonya Arnold, Dyer County

· Billy Atkins, Montgomery County

· Adrian Bailey, Knox County

· Sharon Bailey, Knox County

· Marvin Baker, Smith County

· Lee Barfield, Davidson County

· Pete Barile, Hamblen County

· Jim Barrier, Maury County

· Steve Bates, Lewis County

· Sandy Beall, Knox County

· Keith Bell, Sumner County

· Gary Binkley, Cheatham County

· Jim Blalock, Sevier County

· Sid Blalock, Knox County

· Everett Bolin, Jr., Cumberland County

· Randal Boston, Cumberland County

· Keith Bowers, Sr., Carter County

· Chip Boyd, Washington County

· Randy Boyd, Knox County

· David Bradshaw, Anderson County

· Starr Bragg, Blount County

· Jim Bush, Knox County

· Harry Call, Knox County

· Donnie Cameron, Williamson County

· Mike Campbell, Knox County

· Steven Cannon, Williamson County

· Bob Card, Bradley County

· Herman Carrick, Sullivan County

· Bill Carroll, Sevier County

· Billy Carroll, Sevier County

· Rob Carter, Shelby County

· Steve Cates, Williamson County

· Matt Chambers, Knox County

· Charlie Chandler, Dyer County

· Brandon Cherry, Smith County

· Tom Cigarran, Davidson County

· Pete Claussen, Knox County

· Kevin Clayton, Blount County

· Robert Clear, Campbell County

· Noble Cody, Putnam County

· Scott Collins, Hancock County

· Evan Cope, Rutherford County

· Howard Cotter, Marion County

· Dan Crockett, Davidson County

· Ricky Crook, Hamilton County

· Milton Curtis, Sumner County

· Joe Davenport, Hamilton County

· Ron DeBerry, Sumner County

· Fred Decosimo, Hamilton County

· Joe Decosimo, Hamilton County

· William DeLay, Davidson County

· Michael Dumond, Perry County

· Harvey Durham, McNairy County

· Jonathan Edwards, Lawrence County

· Paul Ellis, Montgomery County

· Danny England, Claiborne County

· David England, Dickson County

· Tom Flynn, Cumberland County

· Darrell Freeman, Davidson County

· Bud Fultz, Rutherford County

· Sam Furrow, Knox County

· Buddy Gambill, Rutherford County

· Bill Giannini, Shelby County

· Mike Gibbs, Cheatham County

· Randy Gibson, Knox County

· Trow Gillespie, Shelby County

· Leigh Gillig, Williamson County

· Ann Gillis, Smith County

· Bill Greene, Carter County

· Gay Gregson, Madison County

· Hoy Grimm, Blount County

· Bill Hagerty, Davidson County

· John Haines, Cheatham County

· Danny Hale, Sumner County

· Jim Hamilton, Dyer County

· Mike Harris, Dyer County

· Melinda Headrick, Blount County

· Tom Hendricks, McNairy County

· Dean Higby, Rutherford County

· Randy Hodges, Knox County

· Randy Hoffman, Sumner County

· Tony Hollin, Knox County

· Tom Hooper, Haywood County

· Tom Hughes, McMinn County

· Glen Hutchinson, Rutherford County

· Orrin Ingram, Davidson County

· Jack Jarvis, Sullivan County

· Lance Jenkins, Bedford County

· Alex Johnson, Sevier County

· Greg Jones, Bedford County

· Bryan Jordan, Shelby County

· Raja Jubran, Knox County

· Bland Justis, Greene County

· Doug Kennedy, Knox County

· Bob Kenworthy, Henry County

· Chris Kinney, Knox County

· Angie Kirby, Blount County

· Maribel Koella, Knox County

· Wayne Kreis, Morgan County

· Eric Lambert, Sevier County

· Steve Land, Knox County

· Greer Lashlee, Gibson County

· T.O. Lashlee, Gibson County

· Rodney Lawler, Knox County

· Fred Lawson, Blount County

· Gigi Lazenby, Davidson County

· Ted Lazenby, Davidson County

· Bill Lee, Williamson County

· Terry Leonard, Greene County

· Buddy Liner, McMinn County

· Mike Magill, Anderson County

· Boyce Magli, Williamson County

· Brad Martin, Shelby County

· Larry Masters, Jefferson County

· Fiona McAnally, Knox County

· Rob McCabe, Davidson County

· Dale McCulloch, Wilson County

· Mike McGuffin, Davidson County

· Stuart McWhorter, Davidson County

· Tommy Mitchell, Houston County

· Jeff Monson, Sevier County

· Kitty Moon Emery, Davidson County

· Danny Moore, Crockett County

· Lewis Moorer, Jr., Davidson County

· Mike Mortimer, Lewis County

· Cynthia Moxley, Knox County

· Doug Muech, Henry County

· Lyle Mullins, Hancock County

· Bill Newsom, Dyer County

· Scott Niswonger, Greene County

· Jerry O’Connor, Unicoi County

· Linda Ogle, Sevier County

· Joe Orgill, Shelby County

· Kevin Painter, Blount County

· Greg Petty, Dyer County

· Teddy Phillips, Jr., Knox County

· Victor Pike, Dyer County

· Johnny Pitts, Shelby County

· John Pontius, Shelby County

· Aubrey Preston, Williamson County

· Ben Probasco, Hamilton County

· Scotty Probasco, Hamilton County

· Sharon Pryse, Knox County

· Newt Raff, Washington County

· Brian Ragan, Dickson County

· Carroll Richardson, Sullivan County

· Don Ridley, Hawkins County

· Matt Riggsbee, Crockett County

· Jerry Riley, Sr., Crockett County

· Jerry Riley, Jr., Crockett County

· Joe Riley, McMinn County

· John Roberts, Coffee County

· Kenneth Roberts, Robertson County

· Richard Roberts, Greene County

· Don Rogers, Hamblen County

· Paul Rose, Tipton County

· John Ross, Gibson County

· Bill Sansom, Knox County

· Ricky Sanders, Crockett County

· John Santi, Shelby County

· Nate Schott, Rutherford County

· Brenda Sellers, Blount County

· Jerry Sharber, Williamson County

· Richard Sheperd, Blount County

· Susan Simons, Davidson County

· Bill Sinks, Sumner County

· Jerry Smith, McMinn County

· Reese Smith, Williamson County

· Steve Smith, Williamson County

· Tom Smith, Davidson County

· Pete Sommer, Lewis County

· Jerry Stanley, Lauderdale County

· Roger Staton, Madison County

· Doug Stephenson, Madison County

· Nick Stewart, Montgomery County

· Clayton Stout, Washington County

· Wes Stowers, Jr., Knox County

· Michael Strickland, Knox County

· Leroy Thompson, Knox County

· David Verble, Sevier County

· Jim Vines, Jefferson County

· Howard Wall, Rutherford County

· Harry Wampler, Loudon County

· Ron Watkins, Knox County

· John Weathers, Hamilton County

· Ted Welch, Davidson County

· Charles West, Blount County

· Andy White, Blount County

· Kahren White, Blount County

· Ken White, Monroe County

· Tommy Whittaker, Sumner County

· Ted Williams, Dickson County

· Chad Wood, Henderson County

· Shirley Woodcock, McMinn County

· Eleanor Yoakum, Claiborne County

· Kenny Young, Williamson County

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