Four years later my then Uncle Bob Hamilton ran for General Sessions Judge and I got an up close view of politics. He was married at the time to my mother’s youngest sister, Connie. Aunt Connie and Uncle Bob were a team, and I got to go along for the ride. Knocking on doors, putting up signs, handing out palm cards at factories were the daily activities. My parents were also in on the action. My Mom and Aunt Connie would tell me of how important it was to have good local officials. At a rally in Statesville, my Mom made me sit next to her and listen to every speech. She would say, “Listen close, this is important because the people we elect locally have a great impact on our lives”.
At the end of the rally, my Mom told me “those people up on that stage today are called leaders, and what they do is called leadership. One day I will expect the same from you.”
I still think of that day every day that I drive down Trousdale Ferry Pike to the County Courthouse were I have the honor and privilege of serving as Wilson County Property Assessor. I remember where I come from driving this rural road and who it is that I am elected to serve.
Trousdale Ferry Pike has brought more than farming and politics into my version of the good life. One day in 2007, a young lady pulled up to the farm looking for peaches. I noticed she had Davidson County license plates and that she was not wearing a wedding ring. But I really noticed how beautiful she was and how contented and happy she seemed. Her smile and quick wit were hard to resist. I didn’t have any peaches, but was lucky enough to exchange emails with this beautiful lady named Kalee. We started dating soon after that meeting and married a little over a year later.
The best part of the good life for me is my wife and partner, Kalee. When we met, I was a farmer turned local politician and she was working for former Vice President Al Gore. She truly got the worst part of the deal. Kalee is my “true north”. She keeps me grounded and on the right track. She says that I bring humor and authenticity into her life. Either way, I am truly lucky.
When I think about what makes a good life, it is what makes you happy and content. For me, it is my family and life on Trousdale Ferry Pike.