Jody Richards speaks Sixth in Campbellsville University Gubernatorial Candidate Forums

By Joan C. McKinney, director of university communications

CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – Campbellsville University will host Democrat Jody Richards, speaker of the Kentucky House of Representatives, candidate for governor, as the sixth in a series of gubernatorial candidate forums at 4 p.m. Thursday, April 12 at Campbellsville Baptist Church.

The sessions are sponsored by CU’s Kentucky Heartland Institute for Public Policy (KHIPP) and Team Taylor County.

This event will take place during the regularly scheduled Campbellsville-Taylor County Chamber of Commerce luncheon, and reservations are required by April 10 by contacting the Chamber office.

John Chowning, vice president for church and external relations at CU and executive assistant to the president who is the founder of KHIPP, said all of the major candidates have been asked to participate in the forums.

Each event is open to the public.

Chowning said each of the candidates will also be featured on his TV-4 television show, “Dialogue on Public Issues” which is shown on Monday and Wednesdays at 1:30 p.m., Mondays at 6:30 p.m. and Wednesdays at 7 p.m.

The Richards interview will be aired on Comcast Cable 10 on Monday, April 23 and Wednesday, April 25.

“We at Campbellsville University and at Team Taylor County are honored to be able to host these gubernatorial forums,” said Chowning. “Our goal is to allow the public to listen to the major candidates, hear their goals and platforms, and then make educated judgments on who to vote for in May. We also deeply appreciate the financial support of our local banks who are helping underwrite the costs of the series of candidate forums.”

Announcements will be made on each candidate forum during the series.

“We invite everyone to come hear these candidates and to watch the show on our TV-4,” said Chowning.

For more information on the events, contact Chowning at (270) 789-5520 or at

Richards’ biography can be found on his Web site at

Richards, who began his career as a teacher at Western Kentucky University, first ran for office in 1975, when he won the 20th District seat in the Kentucky House of Representatives, a position he holds to this day.

While still in his first term, Richards was called upon to chair the House’s Education Committee. He later played an instrumental part in engineering Kentucky’s sweeping education reforms by chairing one of the committees that helped draft the Kentucky Education Reform Act, and he has shown the same commitment in leadership roles in the Southern Legislative Conference’s Education Committee and the Legislative Advisory Council of the Southern Regional Education Board.

In 1987, Richards was chosen by his Democratic colleagues in the House to serve as their Majority Caucus Chairman, one of the body’s five leadership positions. And in 1995, Richards reached the culmination of his nearly two decades of legislative service and leadership by being chosen Speaker of the House.

Richards is the owner of Superior Books,Inc., a wholesale book sales and distribution company in Bowling Green, and is a long-time member of Greenwood Park Church of Christ.

He has a son, Roger, a daughter-in-law, Ellen, and a granddaughter, Holly Beth. Richards and his wife, Neva, live in Bowling Green, Ky.

Campbellsville University, now celebrating her Centennial year, is a private, comprehensive institution located in South Central Kentucky. Founded in 1906, Campbellsville University is affiliated with the Kentucky Baptist Convention and has an enrollment of 2,310 students who represent 100 Kentucky counties, 32 states and 28 foreign nations. Listed in U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best Colleges” 14 consecutive years as one of the leading Southern master’s colleges and universities, Campbellsville University is located 82 miles southwest of Lexington, Ky., and 80 miles southeast of Louisville, Ky. Dr. Michael V. Carter is in his eighth year as president.

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