Kim Frazier kicks off campaign for County Commission
By Bill Howard
Kim Frazier has been active in Knox County community affairs for a number of years.
According to her website – electkimfrazier.com – she has been a hands-on information source and advocate for a wide range of issues and initiatives, from schools, infrastructure and law enforcement, to more abstract goals like “helping communities understand local government processes and capabilities.”
Earlier this year, Frazier decided the needed changes and improvements she sought for Knox County’s citizens could be achieved more effectively if she transitioned from private-citizen activist to elected official.
On Tues., Nov. 9, Frazier threw a party at the Bridgewater Place event venue to kick off her candidacy for At-Large Seat 11 on the county commission of Knox County. She will run as a Republican.
The county commission has 11 members, one elected from each of the nine commission districts, and two elected at-large. Frazier chose to run at-large because she said that enabled her to affect change beyond just the Hardin Valley district she lives in.
“Being at-large gives you the chance to help so many more people,” said Frazier. “Knox County is my community; I want to help people all over the county.”
“I have always been a public servant,” said Frazier, when asked the main reason she decided to seek public office. “I’ve served on multiple boards, stakeholder committees, focus groups … just through loving my community and being passionate about people I started to learn more about local government and how it impacts us in small ways and big ways.”
For Frazier, infrastructure underpins issues far and wide.
“If you think about it, infrastructure encompasses everything,” she said. “Our economy, our roads, our education, our recreational offerings … it all falls under infrastructure. And we’re a little behind on that.”
“For the past three years I have advocated for the Comprehensive Growth Plan,” Frazier went on. “Recently the Knox Co. Commission and the mayor supported and passed funding for the Comprehensive Land Use and Transportation Plan. It is critically important that we elect someone who understands that process, and can be effective in implementing the findings of that plan.”
Frazier’s right-leaning politics derive largely from her position on fiscal matters.
“I call myself a common-sense conservative and a responsible Republican,” Frazier said. “I am very fiscally responsible, and I have very deep Christian principles. That’s why I tend to lean a little to the right.”
Married for 25 years with two sons, Frazier, 48, is quite open about the foundational importance of her faith to her and her family.
“Over the course of the last year I prayed a lot and I just felt called to do this,” she said. “I will always put community first. I believe that this is an opportunity to serve. And local government is about service above all else.”
Frazier has lived in Knoxville for 25 years. A Huntsville, Ala. native, she met her husband, Dr. Russ Frazier, at a wedding in 1994. Two years later they married and moved to Knoxville.
“Over the past 25 years, Knox County has been so good to us,” said Frazier on her website.
The couple’s first child, son Jackson, was born in 2004. Their second son, Maddox, came along the next year. Each is a guitarist in a band that entertained the crowd before and after Frazier spoke. The band’s repertoire spanned country, pop, rock and soul.
Lisa Starbuck is a longtime community advocate in Northeast Knox County. She and Frazier co-founded the Knox Co. Planning Alliance. According to its website, KCPA is a “coalition of involved citizens and community groups advocating for improved and effective planning for future development and growth in Knox County.”
“Kim has been very active in advocating for schools and helping neighborhoods organize to support or oppose rezonings and proposed developments,” said Starbuck. “She’ll be a wonderful member of the county commission.”
Frazier’s past employment has included being a human resources director for an entertainment lighting company and an executive director for a rehabilitation healthcare company.
“Today I devote 100% of my time to my family and to public service,” said Frazier. “I spend my time by giving it back to others.”