As a lifelong educator, I have been privileged to meet many talented graduates who have taken their place in leadership of our community. These former Mocs have received strong educational experiences and are now in careers that will lead in business, education, and many other fields for the betterment of Hamilton County and the state of Tennessee. One of those talented people is Joda Thongnopnua. Joda is the son of working class parents in East Ridge, so he knows this community's character and what we need from our state government. He has chosen to follow a career in public service to make a difference in the lives of citizens here and across the state.
Joda studied public policy and business at UT Chattanooga while I was chancellor. He has used his background to start his own nonprofit company which gathers solid public information on education, working wages, and state and local services. His analysis of this information gives him and his colleagues at the Metro Ideas Project, of which I was an early board member, to give elected officials and policy makers the information they need to make good decisions on behalf of the taxpayers who choose them. Joda stands for improved public schools, better wages for working individuals and families, and a stronger connection between state legislators and their constituents.
I know first-hand that Joda is a smart, hard-working man who would be a strong asset to the state legislature for District 30. He is of the highest integrity, and he will be a representative for Hamilton County whom we can be proud of. That is why I support Joda Thongnopnua without hesitation.
Roger G. Brown
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga