Ratliff announces candidacy for Mount Pleasant mayor

Thomas Ratliff wants to be the next mayor of Mount Pleasant. Current mayor and longtime physician Dr. Paul Meriwether has chosen not to seek re-election for the upcoming May 2019 election. Meriwether has served in some capacity of Mount Pleasant City government for some 20 years first on the City Council and for the past seven years as mayor.

“After discussions with my family, friends, community leaders and various elected officials, I am pleased to announce my campaign for Mayor of Mount Pleasant,” Ratliff explained. “During our 27 years of marriage, Stacy and I have been involved in service to our communities, whether through our children’s schools, our churches, or the state of Texas. Eleven years ago, when we decided living in the big city was not for us, we chose to come home to the town we were raised in and where both sides of our family still live today. Our families owe a lot to Mount Pleasant and running for Mayor is our effort to give back to those who have made such a difference in our families’ lives.”

A 1985 graduate of Mount Pleasant High School, Ratliff earned his undergraduate business degree from Texas Tech University in 1989. In 1994 received a master’s degree from the University of Texas in Austin’s LBJ School of Public Affairs.  In 1998, he opened his own governmental relations company. With sights on his next endeavor, Ratliff has already secured the endorsement of several key community leaders.

“I am honored to have the support of our current Mayor and Mayor Pro Tem, Paul Meriwether and Robert Nance, Titus County Judge Brian Lee, CEO of Titus Regional Medical Center, Terry Scoggin and Mount Pleasant ISD Superintendent Judd Marshall. These gentlemen will be my role models in how to conduct myself as mayor and as a leader in the community. As mayor, I will focus on three things: leadership, partnership and stewardship.”

“I hope to bring a new generation of leadership to the current and next generations of Mount Pleasant,” he explained. “Our area, our industry and our communities are always changing, and we need a city government that can change and adapt to meet the needs of our citizens.”

With a life devoted to civic involvement, Ratliff served on the State Board of Education from 2011-2016 choosing not to seek re-election in 2016.  He was twice elected by a bipartisan coalition of his colleagues to serve as the Board’s Vice Chairman.

Ratliff’s father, Bill, represented District 1 in the Texas Senate for 16 years and later served as Lieutenant Governor of Texas. He is credited with rewriting Texas’ outdated education code and creating a completely new public-school finance system. The elder Ratliff also most recently served as a board trustee for Northeast Texas Community College before retiring two months ago. With a brother who has also been in Texas politics, it comes as no surprise that Thomas Ratliff would like to continue serving others.

“I want to work in partnership with families and individuals, the city council, the county judge and commissioners, the chamber of commerce, the city manager and staff, school district leadership, business leaders and our legislative delegation. I want to listen and learn how we can work together,” Ratliff explained.

He and his wife of 27 years, Stacy, also a Mount Pleasant native, are the proud parents of two children.  Their daughter, a graduate of Texas Tech University, now works for the U.S. House of Representatives in Washington, D.C. and their son is a sophomore at the University of Oklahoma studying Musical Theatre. Stacy Ratliff also spent six years in the classroom at Chapel Hill High School as a high school Spanish teacher, GT coordinator and in various other roles.

Although the first day to sign up for the Spring 2019 election isn’t until Jan. 16, Ratliff’s early announcement is a sign of his eagerness to begin serving his community.

“We won’t agree 100% of the time, but I promise to always maintain an open mind and a respectful dialogue with anyone who is doing what they think is best for Mount Pleasant and our citizens,” he said. “I hope to earn (the citizens’) support and trust.”