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State Senate 17 - Todd Hilton (R)
Todd Hilton
 The race for State Senate District 17, which covers the southeast corner of Rockdale County, is the most crowded in the state, despite the fact that Rep. John Lunsford (R-McDonough) pulled out of the race in April.

Five contenders have stepped forward to replace Sen. John Douglas (R-Social Circle) who held the seat for six years; Douglas is running for Public Service Commission, District 2.

Todd Hilton

Republican Todd Hilton, technology director for Social Circle City Schools, is running because he wants to bring an educator’s perspective to the state senate.

Hilton said he wants decisions about education to be made with the help of educators, not just politicians.

"Over the years, we have been relegated to play the role of passive passenger on this wayward economic journey, with very limited input. As a concerned parent and as an educator, I could no longer stand idly by and watch as others made decisions that would impact our children so profoundly," Hilton said in an e-mail.

Hilton said his platform also contains protection of the family, limited government intrusion and economic accountability, though he did not elaborate in his e-mail.

Hilton has worked for the Social Circle School System for nine years, including as a special education teacher and elementary school administrator. He also worked as a special education teacher for the Newton County School System.

Hilton is a lifelong resident of Newton County and graduated from Newton High School in 1984. He earned a bachlor’s degree in human resources from Georgia Southern College and a master’s degree in special education from Georgia College and State University in 1997.

He earned a specialist in education degree in administration and supervision from GCSU in 2005.

He is a youth minister and certified lay speaker at various United Methodist churches.

He can be reached by e-mail at and has a website - He is married and has four children.