Nicole Ebbeskotte, of Woodstock, made her announcement Sept. 9. She is a former corporal with the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office, having served seven years. Her duties included being the public information officer for the CCSO and being involved with state legislation for the department.
“Well, I feel like I’ve been serving my community for almost 10 years now,” Ebbeskotte said. “I was former law enforcement in the county and have, after I stepped down from that, I was helping kids with mental health dispositions and working with families and serving a lot of the families in our community after that, and felt like I’ve worked in like the political sector of helping candidates or helping campaigns.
“During my tenure with the sheriff’s office, I also was assigned to the Georgia Sheriff’s Association to help write some legislation and oversee some legislation for public safety. But I felt like this is kind of time. I want to take my service to the next level.”
With her law enforcement background, where she has seen state laws in operation, Ebbeskotte believes she is suited to handle legislation relating to any prison or criminal justice reforms Gov. Nathan Deal may be considering.
“I think that the governor has made it very known that he would like to do some reform in the prison system and, basically, the criminal justice system. So I think that’s definitely something that we’re going to be facing coming into it. I think there’s some gun laws basically on the table from last session that we’ll pick back up. But, with a background in public safety, [it] is definitely something that I will take a closer hand in because of the fact I have some background in that area,” she said.
“You know, it’s funny because people say, well, ‘Why are you qualified?’ Well, being in law enforcement ... we have to stay on top of what happens down in Atlanta because when they make the bills we have to be able to make sure we can enforce them,” Ebbeskotte continued. “Or that they make sure to put an enforcement [element] in a bill that is something that is really important to the community. So I think I’ve been part of that process for a long time now.”
In addition to issues relating to criminal justice, Ebbeskotte said she also is interested in bringing greater prominence to Bartow and Cherokee counties. Although she did not believe there was a current issue in the legislature where the two counties are overlooked, she wants to work with other representatives of the area to ensure District 14 gets a higher standing in the state.
“Sometimes I don’t know if north Georgia, especially Cherokee in Bartow — not that we get overlooked, because we have a great delegation — but sometimes it’s not the first place people look,” she said. “So I thought it would be nice to work with the current delegation to make it so that we can really start making sure that Cherokee and Bartow and that little bit of Cobb are most definitely recognized and looked towards first before we get overlooked for some of the issues.”
After making her announcement, Ebbeskotte said she was humbled by what she called the “overwhelming support” she has received. Her plans are now to move forward with her campaign and meet the voters within the district. She also plans to ask voters what they think are the most important issues the legislature needs to address.
“I think a lot of it, too, for this part of the district, is to see what really the constituents feel is truly important for this area. What are they feeling like we’re not addressing downtown and what do they need us to address,” she said.