State Rep. Elena Parent, whose district included much of Brookhaven, recently announced she would not seek re-election. Her district was drawn into another district as fellow Democratic state Rep. Scott Holcomb. On the last day of qualifying, Parent announced she had accepted a position as executive director of Georgia Watch.
Now, Five Questions With ... Elena Parent
So how did this position with Georgia Watch all come about?
Parent: Due to a redistricting process last year that paired incumbent Democrat versus incumbent Democrat, my district was combined with the district represented by my good friend Scott Holcomb. So, we knew at least one of us would be looking for a new job – we would not run against one another.
When I was approached about the position of executive director at Georgia Watch, I thought it could be a great fit. The more I thought about Georgia Watch, the more excited I became about the opportunity. I'm now working full-time on policy issues that affect every Georgian, looking out for consumers.
What will be some of your priorities with Georgia Watch?
Parent: My two top priorities, which are really the organization’s top goals, are to:
- Promote public policies that positively impact Georgians, especially in the areas of energy, finance, access to health care, and access to civil justice, and to
- Develop a responsive network of leaders in Georgia, and utilize the network to make an impact on laws and regulatory policies.
By growing the organization's profile and influence, I look forward to working with the Georgia Watch team to expand the depth and breadth of our work while maintaining the effectiveness of our core programs. Right now we have two key policy areas with full-time staff, our Consumer Energy Program and our Health Access Program. I'd like to add a third full-time policy program eventually.
What are you most proud of during your tenure in the General Assembly?
Parent: The relationships and alliances I built that benefit the district and the people of Georgia.
Any regrets about your state House tenure?
It certainly wasn’t my intention when I ran to only serve one term! But, the unfortunate redistricting process led me to consider new opportunities and I am very excited about my new role with Georgia Watch.
Will we ever see Elena Parent's name on a ballot again?
Parent: Absolutely, although I'm not going to make a prediction as to when!