20211102 Katie Britt 010.jpg

Cliff Williams / The Outlook At Russell Medical Katie Britt spoke with voters as she campaigned for a seat in the U.S. Senate finding an old family friend in Dr. Karen Mockler.

Katie Britt has never held a political office, but she is no stranger to politics — even Washington D.C. politics.

Britt is seeking to replace Alabama’s senior U.S. Senator Richard Shelby. She vows to remember her small town roots of Enterprise and Coffee County and never back down from her values if elected.

“The most important things in life are faith, family and freedom,” Britt said while campaigning in Tallapoosa County this week. “I grew up going to the tiny church my great grandparents started and my parents still attend.”

Britt went to the University of Alabama and served as SGA president and then went to Washington to work in Shelby’s office. Britt returned to Alabama to go to law school and was a practicing attorney before helping Shelby in his last campaign. She stayed with Shelby, joining his team in Washington as Chief of Staff before returning to her roots to lead the Business Council of Alabama (BCA) in 2019. Britt said her parents' work ethic rubbed off on her.

“Both of my parents are small business owners,” Britt said. “They really instilled the value of hard work and I think we are missing that right now in this country and missing what the American dream is built on. That dream is you can roll up your sleeves and work hard and do better than those before you.”

Britt said there is now a culture of taking a hand out with the government giving instead of relying on “the good Lord and hard work to make ends meet.”

“It is something that will ruin this country,” Britt said. “We have to stand up against it.”

Britt said her grandfather taught her a lesson that has already worked in her time as SGA president, walking the halls of the U.S. Capitol with Shelby and heading the BCA.

“He said, ‘Don’t be intimidated by where somebody is from or what their parents do or what’s in their bank account. The things that will determine your path in life are your character, your integrity, your work ethic and the way you treat people. I have good news for you, you control all four of those things,’” Britt said. “I promise you I will keep my head down and work hard and make you proud.”

Britt campaigned in the area Tuesday visiting the Tallapoosa County Girl’s Ranch, the Tallapoosa County Courthouse, Elmers, Whippoorwill Vineyards and Russell Medical. She also visited with businesses and first responders.

Growing up just outside the gates of Ft. Rucker, Britt said freedom has a price.

“I saw day in and day out the sacrifices of our service men and women,” Britt said. “You realize really quickly when you sit next to their kids in class, when their parents are gone for months on end and some of the parents don’t have the opportunity to return home, their sacrifice is that of the entire family.”

Britt said she learned after taking over the BCA she needed to ask better questions during the interview. But is still proud she could navigate the “chess game,” ultimately bringing small business to the table at the BCA. She resigned from her position earlier this year to campaign. Britt believes the skills she refined at the BCA would help her in Washington.

“Coming into that environment where there was division, you have to lead in a way that allows others to follow you,” Britt said. “You have to be passionate and stand firm on your principles and bring people to the table to create resolution to actually move the needle.”

Britt wants mental health to be taken seriously along with substance abuse.

Education also plays a big role into improving issues for Alabamians. Britt said if a child is not reading at grade level by third grade they are four times less likely to graduate from high school. She said non-high school graduates' chance of being arrested goes up five times and most on welfare did not graduate high school.

“That tells you our 8-year olds deserve better and that is not on them, that is on us,” Britt said. “I believe in our state and this nation. I want a country where we teach our children everyday, that they live in the greatest nation in the world.”

Wesley Britt has been a best friend to Katie for the last 21 years and her husband for the last 14. They have two children. Wesley is a former University of Alabama and New England Patriots offensive lineman but realizes his wife has skills he doesn’t — skills he believes would be valuable in Washington.

“Her heart and passion for people is just incredible,” Wesley said. “I have never seen anybody on top of that to get things done, to always get results no matter what the issue is at hand.

“I know I married a Tom Brady and we have to put her in. She is a big girl, tougher than me.”

Britt’s name will be on the Republican primary ballot in May for U.S. Senator along with Lynda Blanchard, U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville), Mike Dunn, Michael Durant, Jake Schafer and Jessica Taylor. Brandaun Dean is seeking the seat as a Democrat.

There is a Jan. 28 filing deadline for the ballot.

Cliff Williams is a staff writer for Tallapoosa Publishers.

Recommended for you