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Seven candidates qualify for Georgia Senate seat

Senator John Bulloch
Posted at 2:40 PM, Dec 14, 2012

ATLANTA, Ga. (WTXL) -- Seven candidates have qualified in next month's special election to fill Georgia's Senate seat in District 11.

State Senator John Bulloch announced earlier this month he was resigning from the position, though no official reason was given. Bulloch was hospitalized back in October for meningitis.

Georgia Senate District 11 covers Decatur, Miller, Seminole, Grady, Colquitt and parts of Thomas counties.

A special election will be held January 8, 2013.

According to Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp's office, seven candidates have qualified to run for election.

They are:

Marshall Berman - 73 year old, retired from DOL. A Republican from Thomasville.

Dean Burke - 55 year old physician. A Republican from Bainbridge.

Brad Hughes - 35 year old self-employed. A Republican from Blakely.

Mike Keown - 58 year old minister, and former state representative and Congressional candidate. A Republican from Coolidge.

Eugene McNease - 69 year old, retired. A Republican from Thomasville.

Lisa Collins - 58 year old, Director of Economic Development. A Democrat from Blakely.

Jeffrey Bivins - 43 year old employee of Armor Clad Industries, LLC. A Libertarian from Cairo.

The seven candidates are seeking to fill the seat Bulloch held since 2002. Bulloch also served as chairman of the Senate committee that handles agriculture policy. He's perhaps best known for sponsoring legislation that allowed Georgians to vote locally on whether to allow Sunday alcohol sales.