Since the political maps for the 2012 election were finally worked out in March, candidates for House District 54 have had to scramble to find the voters they hope to represent in the 83rd Legislature.

The district, which used to stretch as far south as Marble Falls and upper Lake Travis, has shifted to the east, now encompassing the cities of Salado, Nolanville and Harker Heights.

Killeen and Lampasas have been mainstays for both candidates throughout the campaign and have remained in District 54 since before redistricting. Both candidates live in Killeen.

Three-term incumbent state Rep. Jimmie Don Aycock was first elected to the House in 2006.

His experience has played an obvious role in his campaign.

Democratic challenger Claudia Brown, a retired educator, and former Killeen councilwoman, has shown persuasive effort for many voters, who haven’t had a Democrat to vote for in four years.

Jimmie Don Aycock

Age: 66, retired veterinarian/ rancher

What makes you qualified to serve?

Local experience: Killeen ISD trustee, Central Texas College trustee, water board president, Chamber of Commerce president, Economic Development chair, chairman of deacons.

State experience: Chair, Appropriations Subcommittee on Current Fiscal Condition member, House Public Education Committee member, House Appropriations Committee; Co-Chair, Joint Select Committee on School Finance.

Personal background: fourth-generation Bell County native, bachelor and doctorate degrees from Texas A&M University; Army veteran; experienced businessman.

What should be the budget priority?

My budget priorities will continue to focus on education, water planning, transportation and border security.

What is the biggest issue facing the district?

Our biggest issue will continue to be dealing with the needs brought about by rapid growth in our area. We must continue to grow Texas A&M University-Central Texas and Central Texas College in order to meet our workforce demand. We must give the local school district the flexibility they need to teach successfully and efficiently as enrollments increase. We must plan carefully for future demands on transportation and water if we are to continue our favorable quality of life. By accomplishing these goals, we can continue to have good jobs, low taxes and a favorable business environment.

Claudia Brown

Age: 73, retired public school principal

What makes you qualified to serve?

I founded neighborhood and community associations; became president of a 100 presidents community corporation; served as commissioner for Republican and Democratic governors; served on a city council; traveled to Korea for Killeen Sister Cities; received mayors’, unsung heroine, state senate and house of delegates awards. I was commended by a governor who stated he considered my school to be a model for Maryland schools. I involved my school with its surrounding community. The school and community shared goals. With a doctorate, community, and political experience, I am qualified to serve as a legislator.

What should be the budget priority?

The budget priority — since you ask for just one — should be funding for District 54 schools, including Texas A&M University-Central Texas. An educated citizenry is a mandate of the Texas Constitution. It is imperative that the funding that was taken away from District 54 schools in the 82nd Legislative session be restored, especially given the current threat of sequestration.

What is the biggest issue facing the district?

The current biggest issue facing the district is the stabilization of Fort Hood, given the current national push to down-size military bases. Also, with a large population of returning Fort Hood soldiers, accommodations for their quality of life is an imperative, including those things that normally affect us all here in District 54. That is: employment, housing, education, safety, health care, water and transportation. We would like our soldiers to find District 54 the most inviting place to live.

Contact Brandon Janes at or (254) 501-7552

(1) comment


Brown, a liberal Democrat and Obama supporter from Baltimore also wants to ban some of your guns. The choice is clear, support Aycock who has the Texas values that Brown lacks.

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