Former State Rep. Harold Copenhaver announces candidacy for Mayor of Jonesboro

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Press Release – Taylor Riddle

JONESBORO, Ark.- Harold Copenhaver, former State Representative, released the following statement announcing his candidacy for Mayor of Jonesboro:

Over the past few months I have been asked by many citizens, of all backgrounds, to enter the race for Mayor of Jonesboro. These individuals believe it’s time our city is managed by a leader of integrity who will focus on transparency while solving problems for all of our community. Addressing the challenges facing our city must start with City Hall earning the trust of the people of Jonesboro. We have to always focus on eliminating wasteful spending while finding creative ways to increase revenue. The growth of Jonesboro has led to many new challenges that require our city to be proactive rather than reactive. We must fulfill our responsibilities before starting additional projects. Jonesboro has a bright future as long as we have a leader that is focused on bettering our quality of life at all times.

My family and I love this community and believe in its potential which is why we have decided to announce my candidacy for Mayor of Jonesboro. My wife Kathleen and I believe my experience as Jonesboro’s State Representative uniting lawmakers, industries, businesses and citizens makes me the right person to bring our community together. As Mayor, I will work hand and hand with ASU, our hospitals, Chamber of Commerce, industries, businesses and citizens of Jonesboro to ensure our local economy can be strengthened rather than divided. I will always have an open door to guarantee the ideas and needs of the people of Jonesboro are heard.

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Harold, 55, has strong roots in Jonesboro and Arkansas State University. Copenhaver’s parents, Dr. Harold and Ladye Copenhaver, raised Harold in Jonesboro after his father retired as a Major with 23 years of service in the United States Air Force. After retiring from the military, his father served 17 years as Dean of Fine Arts for Arkansas State University.

Harold is a graduate of Jonesboro High School and majored in Business Administration with a focus on Agriculture Business at Arkansas State University.  Harold has an extensive background in agriculture and insurance.  He served as Farm Manager for Covington Farms Inc. before starting his insurance career. Harold has been involved in the insurance industry for over 25 years focusing his attention on insuring churches before becoming a business partner at United Insurance Agency. Most recently Copenhaver served as Vice President of Business Development for Centennial Bank.

Dedicated to giving back to Jonesboro, Harold has been involved with many local boards, committees, and organizations and currently serves on the City Youth Ministries and North East Arkansas Food Pantry boards. During his time at ASU, Copenhaver was a member of the Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity as well as the student government while serving as a Senator. He was a board member of the Rotary Club of Jonesboro.  One honor Harold and his wife, Kathleen Covington Copenhaver, are especially proud of is being recognized as the 2009 Red Wolf Family of the Year, awarded to the family who best exemplifies support for Arkansas State University.

Harold and his wife of 34 years, Kathleen, a teacher at St. Marks Day School, are the proud parents of three children.  Lauren Copenhaver Nunnally who graduated Arkansas State University, is a teacher at the Jonesboro PreK Center, Austin, an ASU graduate, works for Arkansas State University and Myles attends Arkansas State University-Newport.   Harold, known to his friends as “Cope”, is a lifetime hunter and musician.  The Copenhaver’s are members of First Baptist Church where Harold is a part of “The Men’s Trio”, a vocal group that performs across the state.

Legislative Background

During the the 89th General Assembly Rep. Copenhaver served on 5 committees and 3 CopeProfilesubcommittees while successfully sponsoring numerous pieces of legislation that passed with strong bi-partisan support. Representative Copenhaver served as the Chair of the House Revenue and Taxation subcommittee on Sales, Use, Miscellaneous Taxes and Exemptions in addition to serving as Vice Chair of the Legislative Joint Auditing subcommittee on State Agencies. Rep. Copenhaver was also appointed by House Speaker Davy Carter (R- Cabot) to serve as the Co-Vice Chair Arkansas Blue Ribbon Committee on 911 Systems, the National Conference of State Legislators task force on redistricting and elections, and the Southern Legislative Conference committee on Fiscal Affairs and Government Operations.

Harold’s track record fighting for issues facing his district earned him state wide recognition. Following the session, Representative Copenhaver was recognized by the Arkansas Municipal League as a “Distinguished Legislator” for his support of issues facing his community. Harold was also recognized by the Arkansas Advocates and Kids Count organization’s as being one of two to be honored as a “Legislative Champion” for his voting record on issues facing children and families.

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