At just 21, Joshua Anthony is running for the Georgia Legislature as youngest candidate

Dollita Okine March 07, 2024
At only 21 years old, the trailblazer is already concerned about issues such as poverty, unemployment, and growing crime, which he aims to address. Photo Credit: Joshua Anthony

Intending to serve in the Georgia Legislature, Joshua Anthony is vying to represent the state’s 153rd House District. At only 21 years old, the trailblazer is already concerned about issues such as poverty, unemployment, and growing crime, which he aims to address. District 153 encompasses Dougherty County and downtown Albany.

The Georgia State University student told The Atlanta Voice, “I am inspired to lead; I will never forget the encouraging words of my grandfather: Yes, there will be a struggle and tough times, but that doesn’t have to be Albany’s story.”

While the city has produced some excellent leaders with brilliant ideas, he said that the people living there still face difficult circumstances. He feels that it is time to “get involved and create change with a real plan to reverse the continuous cycles of poverty and struggles for Albany’s residents” because other communities outside of Albany’s District 153 are making exceptional progress. “I cannot make promises or changes overnight, but I have a five-year revitalization plan that will create opportunities over the next five years. I want to help my city so they can believe.”

While he works to unseat incumbent Representative David Sampson, Anthony participates in online programs to advance his education.

Along with advocating for his events, the trailblazer has also hosted community town halls called “Talk & Trim” in barbershops, where locals can learn about his platforms and ask questions. Anthony sponsored a Farmers’ Workshop in September 2023, assisting farmers in surrounding counties in applying for federal aid from the USDA. Moreover, he recently spoke with high school students at Commodore Conyers Career Academy’s Career Day and collaborated with Morningside Elementary for his literacy reading initiative.

Anthony’s platform also places a strong emphasis on education, particularly informing seniors about his support for Medicare and Medicaid expansion—a position on policy that the larger Georgia Democratic Caucus has long defended. He also advocates for updating infrastructure and expanding broadband internet access.

Anthony also said he is in favor of developing workforce training programs that emphasize industries and skills unique to rural areas.

He believes it is time for Georgia to raise teacher salaries to attract and retain teachers in the state’s public schools.

He remarked, “I think the only way we can move forward is to initiate a focus on important platforms now. I don’t know what other candidates are doing, but I believe in having a plan concerning policies that improve people’s lives. We must invest in the community’s growth so they can believe together.”

In the long run, he thinks that job creation will also improve Albany’s crime problem, asking, “We have a high crime rate—how do you fix that? Jobs. It’s not going to disappear; that’s not realistic, but it’s going to drop so drastically because we have opportunities, things for people to do,” according to the Albany Herald.

All things considered, Anthony stated that his goal is to put in place essential structures that will enable the community to sustain itself long after he departs.

“We have a strong population that has been doing their best, working themselves to the bone to get the bare minimum. Our community should not have the bare minimum; … shouldn’t have to struggle,” he commented.

Anthony was only 14 when he worked his first political campaign — door knocking and canvassing. Two years later, he interned in the McDonough mayor’s office before writing his first state bill at 19. He now has his eyes on the Georgia Legislature and is working his way to it as the youngest candidate.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: March 7, 2024


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