DeAngelo Jelks and Greg Vital run for a seat in the District 29 general elections

Greg Vital and DeAngelo Jelks

Democrat DeAngelo Jelks is running against Republican Greg Vital for the District 29 Senate seat in the Tennessee House of Representatives. The general election will be held on September 14.

According to a May article by The Tennessean, this election is to attain the seat of Rep. Mike Carter, who died in May of pancreatic cancer.  

Cities and other areas within District 29 include Ooltewah, Collegedale, Sale Creek and some parts of Chattanooga.

On July 27, the primaries were held for District 29. Jelks, who ran uncontested in the Democratic primary, won the primary elections by obtaining 136 votes. Vital, who also ran uncontested, acquired 1,065 votes and secured the Republican nomination. 

According to his campaign website, Vital has been a resident of the Ooltewah-Georgetown area for over 50 years. He is a businessman and co-founder of Morning Pointe Senior Living. His company has expanded to more than 35 senior care centers within five states. 

“Having grown up in the Collegedale-Ooltewah area and as a graduate of Southern Adventist University, I am very familiar with the needs of our community,” Vital said in a statement released to the Accent. As a student at SAU, I was elected to the Collegedale City Commission and served for four years.”

According to his statement, Vital graduated from Southern in 2014 after majoring in business administration.

The Tennessean reported on June 19 that Vital ran for the primary election in 2012 but lost in a close race for the Senate seat to Senator Todd Gardenhire. According to his campaign website, Vital supports conserving wildlife and assisting the youth with better education. 

“I am running to represent House District 29 in Nashville to continue the tradition of conservative leadership in our community to carry on the legacy of Joan and Mike Carter and of course to fight for the people who call Hamilton County home,” Vital said.

According to Jelks’ campaign website, Jelks is a veteran who ranked captain in the U.S. Army Reserve and moved to Chattanooga in 2007. Jelks said he believes Tennesseans deserve a better future for the youth, candid government relations with citizens and a steady economy.

“This special election is very important because it will set the tone for the 2022 election year across the state,” Jelks said in his released statement to the Accent. “This race is about more than winning a seat. Morality and human rights are on the line. Inclusion and transparency in governance are at stake.”

Jelks believes that a firm economy leads to improving opportunities, and those opportunities lead to further economic development, as stated by Jelks’ campaign website.

“Regardless of which candidate you choose, I hope all of you young people exercise your right to vote,” Jelks said.

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