Texas Representative Drew Darby Assists in Student Education
SAN ANGELO, TX - This week, Texas Representative Drew Darby attended an ASU class to speak about state representatives and the campaign process. He also later received an award for his efforts with assisting medical students in their studies of primary care specialties.
Darby’s Lecture to Texas Government Students
The purpose of Darby's discussion was to encourage the students to take action by learning about the campaign process for state elections, a concept students had been learning throughout the semester.
Darby said 2002 was the first time he ran for an open seat as a Texas representative. He spoke of his desire to participate in the election, talked about being a member of the San Angelo City Council, and how his background in law made him fit for the position.
His political consultant, at the time, urged him to refrain from traditional door-to-door exposure to voters, and instead suggested using mail advertising and phone banking to reach constituents. This decision lead him to not put forth as much effort as originally intended.
He lost by 46 votes that election. The main point of the story he said was addressing the reality of state elections, and how, in defeat, he did a complete turnaround and focused his efforts on two of his passions: water issues and economic development solutions.
Both these efforts had him work with the San Angelo community, and by doing so, led him to meet face-to-face with voters on the campaign trail.
The second time around Darby pledged that he knocked on 60 percent of the doors in San Angelo. He did so to meet the constituents he would be representing in the Texas Legislator.
He explained to students that the Texas Legislator meets in Austin, Texas every other year, and the session lasts 140 days. The time frame for the sessions starts in January and runs through May. His point being that state representatives, like himself, are there to help their constituents, like the students who attend Angelo State.
“That is where we do--the people’s business,” Darby said.
Dr. Hunt, assistant professor of Political Science, invited Darby to speak with his class so students could gain hands-on experience from someone who has been thorough these election cycles. He explained his class covers Texas Government and the different aspects involving state elections and political culture.
“In terms of the campaigns, it was great for students to hear [Darby] speak about hiring political consultants, which is something we are discussing in this chapter,” Hunt said.
He explained how students gained a better perspective on elections by hearing about Darby’s first attempt, where there wasn’t a focus on meeting voters in person, compared to his second campaign that took a completely different approach.
“We have been discussing these different avenues in theory,” Hunt said. “It was great to hear him explain that as a candidate; you hire consultants, and, from these discussions, make a decision of how the campaign will be run.”
Darby Awarded for Efforts to Help Medical Students
Darby didn’t stay in one place for long during his visit this week. On the same day of his visit to ASU, he was granted a Presidential Award by Mike Campbell, Esperanza Health and Dental Centers-CEO, and President of the Texas Association of Community Health Centers.
Campbell gave the award to Darby for his efforts to better the education of students pursuing medical studies. His efforts have helped students studying in this field, and many have pledged to provide services that have been historically underserved in primary care specialties, Campbell said.
These specialties include family practice, obstetricians (study concentrated on pregnancies), gynecologists and pediatrics.
“[Darby] is very sensitive to the fact that we have a shortage of physicians in the primary care regents,” said Campbell.