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Sunday, Sep. 25, 2016

Ray seeks re-election to county mayor post

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Eugene Ray
(Submitted photo)
Eugene Ray has announced his candidacy for re-election as Bedford County mayor in the May 4 Democratic primary.

Ray, a Bedford County native, was elected county mayor in 2006. He retained his position as chairman of the Bedford County Commission, and has served on the Commission for over 28 years. State law allows a county mayor to either chair or hold veto power over the county commission, but not both.

Ray has served as a board member for numerous organizations, including the local United States Selective Service Board, Senior Citizens Center, Shelbyville Parks and Recreation, Boys & Girls Club, Shelbyville Industrial Development Board, Main Street Association, Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration Association, Middle Tennessee Resource Conservation Board, Middle Tennessee State University Community Advisory Council, Shelbyville Rotary Club, and the South Central Tennessee Regional Transportation Technical Committee.

His leadership roles include serving as president of Shelbyville-Bedford County Chamber of Commerce, Bedford County Little League and the Babe Ruth Baseball Association. During his term as chamber president, the county was certified as a Three-Star Community. He has also been a member of the Bedford County Emergency Medical Services board, the Tennessee County Commissioners Association, and the Tennessee County Services Board.

Ray is an active member of Bright Temple COGIC where he serves as administrative assistant and financial director. He is retired from Arnold Engineering Development Center (AEDC) after 35 years of employment. He is a retired licensed real estate broker.

Ray's wife Olivia has been a nurse for over 40 years. They have four children, two of whom are deceased, and two grandchildren.

Ray graduated from Bedford County Training School and attended Motlow State Community College. He also completed a 42 month course on operating engineering at AEDC as well as correspondence courses.

Ray said that during his administration, county government has been able to live within its means with no increase in the tax rate. He said the community will benefit from the opening of the Middle Tennessee Education Center and that county purchasing, budgeting and financial management has been consolidated, which he says has save the taxpayers more than $2.5 million. More than $2 million in grants have been secured for utility extensions and home construction.

Ray said his office has been accessible to all citizens.

"During these tough economic times, I pledge to the citizens and taxpayers of Bedford County, to keep the size and cost of government under control. I believe that this can be accomplished by sound financial management, effective liaison between the City and County, and continuing to work together to solve problems," said Ray. " I hope the voters will allow me another term as Mayor to help make our community a better place to live and work. I look forward to the continuing opportunity to serve all the people in Bedford County."

Ray said that, if re-elected, he will keep government in a strong fiscal condition, continue to work for industrial retail and commercial growth, plan responsible infrastructure growth, deal responsibly with diversity and continue to improve the local educational system.

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