(Nashville) – Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey today announced that he has selected Sen. Bo Watson (R – Hixson) to serve as the state Senate’s next speaker pro tempore. Sen. Watson will succeed the current speaker pro tem, Sen. Jamie Woodson (R – Knoxville) in that position. Sen. Woodson announced yesterday her intention to resign from the Senate effective July 1.
“It is rare that you find someone who works as hard for the people of Tennessee as Bo Watson,” said Ramsey. “His tireless work on issues of government reform has been an inspiration to all of us striving to make state government as small, efficient and transparent as possible. I’m extremely pleased he has agreed to take the job.”
“I’m humbled and honored that Lt. Gov. Ramsey has placed this kind of faith in me,” said Sen. Watson. “I look forward to serving my speaker to the best of my ability in this new role.”
The speaker pro tempore is a key leadership role in the General Assembly, both public policy-wise and operationally. Most notably, the speaker pro tempore presides over the state Senate in the absence of the speaker.
Watson, a strong conservative, is currently the chairman of the Senate Government Operations Committee and the vice-chair of the General Welfare, Health & Human Resources Committee.
Watson graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a Bachelor of Arts degree in biology. He currently works as a physical therapist at Parkridge Medical Center in Chattanooga. Watson was elected to represent the 11th Senatorial District in 2006 after serving one term in the state House.
He resides in Chattanooga with his wife, Jill. They have one son.