House Loses One Of The Good Guys – Mike Dudgeon Not Running For Re-election

I’ll add a personal note to this press release.  Mike Dudgeon is a thoughtful man.  He’s a statesman in a world where those that can be called that grow fewer among those who seek to make noise.  We’ve had many good conversations over the years.  On many things we agree.  On some we do not. But I’ve walked away from each of those conversations learning something new, and knowing that a smart and thoughtful man was going to do what he thought was best for his constituents and the citizens of Georgia.

Representative Mike Dudgeon, (R-Johns Creek / South Forsyth), announced today that he will not run for reelection in 2016. “I really hate to leave the Georgia House, but the reality is that my business commitments no longer give me enough time to serve. In the private sector I am the CTO for Hirez Studios in Alpharetta, and we are now in full high tech growth company mode. In doing both jobs my work-life balance is not sustainable. Therefore I have to step away from politics for the time being.”

Rep. Dudgeon has served 10 years in elective office, four on the Forsyth County Board of Education and six in the House. “I have a great district and great constituents, and I have loved representing them. They have my commitment I will vigorously pursue my legislative priorities for our area and the state as I finish this final session”.

He continued, “I also hope to remain involved in policy, especially around education. I also will be offering to help consult with the Legislature in the future on continuing to improve their technology.”

I want to emphasize this line, as I will probably bring it back for a larger discussion:

“My business committments no longer give me enough time to serve”

We live in a land where many on social media (and too many bloggers) believe that our elected officials are overpaid (at $17K per year), and deserve by their title to be flogged at every turn, with every one of their motives questioned. We underpay them, and we treat them…not well. And then we have a hard time understanding when they make natural choices to leave public service to return to family and financial obligations.

I’m going to miss Mike. Georgia is better off for the time he spent in our legislature.

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John Vestal
John Vestal

Just saw his announcement on FB. As I told him (he’s my rep, btw), I hate the news, but understand. :>( I first met Mike a few years before he ran for his House seat, when we both had boys in Scouts together (Troop 143) and were both acting as Assistant Scoutmasters. He is a good and dedicated individual. The House will miss him.

analogkid
analogkid

I’ve commented a number of times about legislative salaries being low to the point of only encouraging the power hungry and those seeking favorable treatment for their own businesses to run for office. This is how I would solve the problem: (1) Increase salaries in the House for the next legislative session, so that only newly elected and re-elected House members receive the benefit. (2) Do basically the same thing for Senate salaries. Not sure if their terms or staggered or what, but it shouldn’t be too hard to deal with. (3) Set the salary for the next fiscal year… Read more »

Lawton Sack
Lawton Sack

I agree that the legislative salaries are too low. There are people that would be excellent legislators that just cannot afford to serve.

#1,2 – Both Representatives and Senators serve 2 year terms in Georgia, so a plan would work equally for both.

#3 – I think that an adjustment every two years would be prudent.

analogkid
analogkid

Ah, good to know re: terms in the Senate. Thanks Lawton.