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This local attorney announced he’s running for Congress
Ethan Underwood
Ethan Underwood.

A well-known Forsyth County zoning attorney has announced he will run for Georgia’s 9th Congressional District.

Ethan Underwood, a partner with Miles, Hansford and Tallant, announced on Tuesday morning his intention to run for the seat currently held by Rep. Doug Collins, who is running for Senate, since 2013.

“I am running for U.S. Congress in Georgia’s 9th District because we need a battle-ready Republican leader who can make decisions and take action day-one on the issues that are in the best interest of our district and our state,” said Underwood in a news release. “While Washington D.C. is embroiled in a hostile, philosophical fight, Northeast Georgia communities care about problems and solutions in real life. I will work relentlessly to clear the path for our citizens to make a living and pursue happiness.”

Georgia’s 9th Congressional district includes all of Banks, Dawson, Elbert, Fannin, Franklin, Gilmer, Habersham, Hall, Hart, Jackson, Lumpkin, Madison, Rabun, Stephens, Towns, Union and White counties and parts of Clarke, Forsyth and Pickens counties.

Underwood has long been involved in politics. Per the release, he first got involved with local campaigns as a volunteer at age 15 and “has worked to elect conservative candidates at all levels of government.”

He served as chairman of the Forsyth County Republican Party from 2009-13, was 2nd vice-chair of the 9th Congressional District Republican Party until April 2015, is a member of the GOP state committee and, in 2015, ran to fill the unexpired term of then-District 24 state Rep. Mark Hamilton, a race won by current state Rep. Sheri Gilligan.

Underwood and his wife, Tiffany – along with their son, Gabriel, and daughters, Elise, Amelia and Charlotte – have lived in Forsyth County since 2003. The family attends Mountain Lake Church.

Per the release, due to Underwood’s experience dealing with Elise’s health issues, including open-heart surgery, Down syndrome and acute myeloid leukemia, which involved chemotherapy treatments at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, he “is passionate about making certain Georgians have access to quality, privately-funded healthcare options – and fighting against a single-payer healthcare system.”

Underwood said he also is in favor of school choice, saying that a “one-size-fits-all educational system does not work for all children.”

Underwood graduated from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and earned his law degree with a concentration in business transactions and an MBA with a concertation in finance from the University of Tennessee.

Along with Underwood, District 9 state Rep. Kevin Tanner, a Republican who represents portions of Lumpkin, Dawson and Forsyth counties, has announced his campaign for the seat, as well as state Rep. Matt Gurtler of Tiger, state Sen. John Wilkinson of Toccoa and former Georgia congressman Paul Broun of Athens.

The primaries for the seat will be held on May 19 and the general election is on Nov. 3.