Nitro council member, teacher announces run for House seat

NITRO, W.Va. — A city council member and school teacher in Nitro is throwing his hat into the ring for a House of Delegates seat in 2022.

Andy Shamblin, a Republican, announced his candidacy for House of Delegates District 59 on Tuesday during an appearance on MetroNews flagship 580-WCHS in Charleston. The new district is a product of the 100 single-member Delegate districts in the state-approved in October.

Andy Shamblin

The district is in Kanawha County and includes nearly 70% of Nitro and the Cross Lanes area to Tyler Mountain. Shamblin said Dianna Graves (R-Kanawha) currently serves in the new district where she previously served in 38.

Shamblin said he feels like he can bring leadership to the district. Shamblin was elected to Nitro City Council in 2012 at age 21 and said he has learned the value of being bipartisan.

“After my service on city council, I have learned how to work with people. I would like to see us as a state and district work to solve our problems together, with each other,” he said on 580-LIVE.

Shamblin said he teachers mainly seniors at Nitro High School in subjects such as civics and AP government. Along with serving on council, he said there would be no learning curve in the legislature.

“I feel like I am knowledgeable about how the legislature works, what the legislative process is. I understand how all of that goes together because I teach it every day,” Shamblin said.

He said his focuses would be on improving the education system and public schools along with focusing on economic development.

Shamblin said voters would see a clear contrast between himself and Graves, particularly in education. Graves voted to pass the omnibus education bill in 2019 that included charter schools. Shamblin said in his 10 years in public life, he has never had a constituent come to him and say charter schools would improve public schools.

“I’m not necessarily saying there is no place for what people refer to as school choice. I think in certain circumstances, something like a charter school could be beneficial. That’s if they are offering something that the public school system is not offering,” Shamblin said.

The 2022 primary election in West Virginia is scheduled for May 10.

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