Wanda May receives Statesman of the Year award

Wanda May (right) receives the Statesman of the Year award from Congresswoman Diana Harshbarger.

It all started for Wanda May back in 1970 when she went to work on Tex Ritter’s U.S. Senate campaign. Ritter wasn’t able to overcome Bill Brock in the Republican primary, but May remembers Ritter – a member of the Grand Ole Opry and a former actor who appeared in 70 movies – as a southern gentleman.

From that campaign on, May has been active recruiting, electing and raising funds for Republican candidates. Her tireless work was recognized recently when she earned the prestigious Statesman of the Year award for Tennessee’s First Congressional District. 

Congresswoman Diana Harshbarger nominated May for the award.

“Wanda May has been instrumental in recruiting, electing, and raising funds for conservative Republican candidates in East Tennessee since 1970 and helped found the East Tennessee Republican Club, now one of the largest GOP groups in the state,” Harshbarger said.

The plaque presented to May recognizes her “outstanding service and commitment to the Republican Party.” May was humbled by the honor and thanked her husband Bob for supporting her. 

“This is the biggest award, the biggest honor I’ve ever had,” May told the News & Neighbor. “I’m grateful for all the wonderful people I’ve had the opportunity to work with over all these years.

“And it helps to have a husband who is behind you 100 percent.”


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