Tennessee State Senator Mike Bell (R-Riceville) will not be a candidate for re-election in 2022, according to a press release Monday from the Tennessee Senate Republican Caucus. Bell represents Senate District 9 which covers Bradley, McMinn, Meigs, Monroe and Polk Counties.

Bell was first elected to the Tennessee House of Representatives in 2006 before moving to the State Senate in 2010.

“It has been the highest honor of my life to serve in the Tennessee General Assembly,” Senator Bell said in a statement. “I am incredibly thankful for the continued support, friendship and kindness of my constituents who have entrusted me to represent them for the past 15 years. Just as I knew it was time for me to run for office in 2006, I feel it is now time to move to the next chapter of my life and pass the leadership mantle for this district to a new state senator.”

According to the press release, Bell has served in several leadership positions during his legislative tenure. In addition to chairing the Senate Judiciary Committee, he led the Senate Government Operations Committee from 2012 to 2018. In the House of Representatives, Bell chaired the Children and Family Subcommittee and was Freshman Leader in the Republican Caucus.

In addition, he currently serves as Chairman of the General Assembly’s Sportsmen’s Caucus and is a member of the Executive Council for the National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses (NASC), receiving several awards on behalf of his efforts to preserve hunting and fishing. He also serves as Chairman of Tennessee’s Asian Carp Advisory Commission to study and provide advice regarding the best methods for mitigating the invasion of Asian carp into the state’s lakes and river systems, as noted by the press release.

Bell will continue to serve until a new state senator is elected in the regular general election on November 8, 2022.

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Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Senator Mike Bell” by Senator Mike Bell. Background Photo “Tennessee Capitol by Thomas R Machnitzki. CC BY 3.0.