Longtime Dawson County District 4 Commissioner Julie Hughes Nix recently announced her plans to seek a fourth term this year.
A lifelong county resident, Hughes Nix became the first woman elected to the commission in 1996. After taking four years off following her first term, she was re-elected in 2004 and '08.
"I believe that I bring a unique perspective to the commission because of my extended length of service and experience in county government," she said.
"Most citizens find that I am easy to talk to about their concerns and that I am a careful, attentive listener. I feel I am able to influence the discussion of the BOC because I can negotiate and get along with the other elected members of the board."
Hughes Nix, a Republican, is the lone candidate to announce for the seat. Qualifying for the July 31 primary is set for May 23-25.
While Hughes Nix admits the past few years have been a challenge for local government, she is proud of the county's accomplishments during her tenure.
The county has funded programs and facilities such as drug court, a new library and Rock Creek Park.
It has also revitalized War Hill Park and has built a new jail, government center and fire stations.
In addition, the county has eliminated impact fees and tightened spending in the wake of the recession.
"I am honored and privileged to have served on the board of commissioners," Hughes Nix said. "I would like the opportunity to continue working to improve and strive for excellence in county government, which was my guiding principal when I started in this public office."
She added that her goals for the next few years include paying down the county's debt and repairing roads, culverts and bridges.
She also wants to maintain the high standards at existing parks and buildings while controlling operational costs.
A Dawson County High School graduate, Hughes Nix earned a bachelor's degree in early education from the University of Georgia and a master's in education from Brenau University.
She holds credentials as a certified county commissioner and is a graduate of the Certified Commissioners' Advanced Program.
She also serves as a board member for Ninth District Opportunity, treasurer for the Reading Education Association of Dawson and is a member of Concord Baptist Church.
Special honors she has received include the Richard "Mike" Brown "You Care Award" from the Dawson County Homeowners Association.
Hughes Nix has two sons, Wyatt and Ryan Nix, and one granddaughter, Mya.