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Hon. Sonny Perdue (GA SS 18)
Legislation Sponsored or Cosponsored

Contact Information
Birthday: December 20 Spouse: Mary Assistant: Patsy Bailey
Capitol Phone: (404) 656-6892 Fax Phone: (404) 657-3217 District Phone: (478) 922-9065
eMail Address: sperdue@legis.state.ga.us
Capitol Address: 302-B Legislative Office Building / Atlanta , GA 30334 / Fulton
District Address: P.O. Box 698 / Bonaire , GA 31005 / Houston
Profession: Agri-Business
Political Party and District Information
Political Party: R
State Senate District: SS 18
Agriculture Member
Corrections, Correctional Institutions & Property Member
Defense, Science & Technology Member
Special Judiciary Member
Biographical Information
SENATOR SONNY PERDUE Sonny Perdue, from Bonaire, serves the people of the Eighteenth Senatorial District in the State of Georgia. This district includes Houston, Bleckley, and Pulaski Counties, as well as a portion of southern Bibb County. During his relatively short tenure as a State Senator, Sonny Perdue's reputation as a skilled listener, patient decision-maker, and tireless worker has earned him the bipartisan respect of his colleagues. After a mere four years in the Senate, Perdue was selected by his peers to fill the second highest elected office within the body, that of Majority Leader. Then, in 1997, Senators elected him President Pro Tempore, another testimony to his expertise as one of Georgia's most effective consensus builders. These positions enabled Senator Perdue (know affectionately as "Sonny" around the Capitol) to ensure that the interests of Georgia's taxpayers are always at the forefront of state policy. In a time of increasing apathy toward state government, he has never forgotten that the job of the public servants is to serve the people, not play politics. Now in his ninth year under the gold dome, Senator Perdue has earned the esteem of constituents, fellow legislators, lobbyists, and the media corps as an expert on numerous issues pertinent to all of Georgia. First among those is education. As former chair of the Senate Higher Education Committee, Perdue built coalitions between numerous public and private interest groups. The result was a united front dedicated to the collaboration between Georgia's public technical institutes and the university system, two of the most respected and popular post-secondary systems in the nation. Today, Perdue maintains his advocacy of education as a strong supporter of such landmark programs as the HOPE Scholarship and free pre-kindergarten education for the state's children. Another issue that benefits from the Houston County lawmaker's energy and leadership is military and defense affairs. With Robins Air Force, Georgia's largest industrial complex as well as the U.S. headquarters and operating base for the E-8 Joint Strategic Target and Radar Surveillance system, a majority of citizens within Senator Perdue's district are affected by this all-important topic. As chair of the Senate Defense Conversion Strategic Study Committee during a time of nationwide base closures and realignment, Perdue played a crucial role in protecting all of Georgia's military assets by highlighting and enhancing their military value through cooperation between business and local communities. Currently, Senator Perdue serves on four standing Senate committees: the Agriculture Committee, which considers legislation dealing with farming and agribusiness, a major component of Eighteenth District's economy; the Corrections, Correctional Institutions and Properties Committee, which considers legislation affecting Georgia's prisons and its Pardons and Paroles System, as well as various other state facilities; the Defense, Science and Technology Committee, reviews and recommends legislation affecting high-tech research and technology development, such as tele-medicine, distance learning programs, as well as measures to make state laws consistent with technological advancements; and the Committee on Special Judiciary, which considers legislation that affects the state's criminal justice system as well as proposed constitutional amendments. As a small business owner, Sonny Perdue has witnessed the transition of his native middle Georgia from primarily rural, agrarian-based communities to a vibrant and diverse economic growth area. Today, the Eighteenth District combines a still strong agricultural base with a burgeoning industrial network. This viewpoint provides Perdue with a unique perspective on the rural/urban issues that often permeate state government. He utilized this experience on the Georgia Future Communities Commission. Through this body, Senator Perdue held a significant role in steering tax breaks and other pro-small business and pro- community legislation through the General Assembly. Fully aware of the applications and benefits of the ever-changing world of technology, Perdue has been a proud leader on Capitol Hill in guiding the General Assembly through the Information Age. He remains an avid supporter of building a framework where the Internet and other electronic and fiber-optic technologies would be available to all Georgians, from kindergartners to centenarians. Furthermore, he authored and steered a bill through the legislature that resulted in the state deregulation of the telecommunications industry. And in other areas of deregulation, Perdue maintains his assertiveness. Placing a strong emphasis on the residential and small business user, Perdue crafted a bill this is nationally hailed as a new benchmark and a model for natural gas deregulation legislation across the United States. While Senator Perdue's heart is always focused upon his neighbors and constituents in the 18th District, he works tirelessly for all the citizens in the state of Georgia. One of his primary projects is an effort to boost economic development throughout the entire state_rural, suburban, and urban. With appointments on the Southern Growth Policies Board as well as the Economic and Cultural Development Committee of the Southern Legislative Conference, Perdue has been able to discover cutting-edge programs that have proved successful in other cities and states. By sharing these ideas with the people in Georgia and then working to implement them, Perdue has become an integral part of job growth and economic opportunities in Georgia. Born on December 20, 1946, in Perry, Georgia, Sonny Perdue's childhood was centered on his family. His father, Ervin, was a proud farmer, and his mother, Ophie, taught school. Early in Sonny's life, he learned the importance of hard work, sacrifice, and responsibility to yourself, your family, and your neighbor, as well as a strong faith in God and a solid education. Perdue shared these times with his sister, Betty. After high school, Senator Perdue earned a doctorate in veterinary medicine from the University of Georgia. He then volunteered to serve in the United States Air Force from 1971 to 1974, the Vietnam War era, receiving the rank of Captain. Following a brief tenure as a practicing veterinarian in Raleigh, North Carolina, Perdue returned to his roots in Georgia, and became a successful small-business owner concentrating on agribusiness and transportation. Today, Senator Perdue resides just down the road from his boyhood home in Bonaire. Perdue is married to the former Mary Ruff of Atlanta, Georgia. The couple has four children: Leigh, a speech therapist; Lara, a software consultant in Atlanta; Jim, who was recently called into the ministry and currently attends the University of Georgia; and Dan, a senior at Houston County High School. The Perdues are members of the Second Baptist Church in Bonaire.

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