As the November 3, 2020 election date draws ever closer, the citizens of Farmerville are looking closely at the candidates vying for the seat of mayor. After three terms, Mayor Stein Baughman, Jr. has decided not to seek reelection and five candidates have successfully qualified to run for the open position. One of those candidates is Ar thur C. “Boots” Hackney.
Hackney, a Farmerville native, has been married to his wife, Alice Hackney, for 46 years and they have two children and three grandchildren, and he has been a member of Blooming Grove Baptist Church since 1959.
Based on his long and illustrious list of qualifications, Hackney feels that he is the candidate best qualified to fill the mayoral seat. “I feel I am the best qualified candidate to hold such a distinguished office as Mayor of the Town of Farmerville,” Hackney said.
That list of qualifications is both long and varied. He graduated from Louisiana Tech University in 1972 where he received a degree in Health and Physical Education. Hackney also attended University of Louisiana at Monroe and Grambling State University in pursuit of a master’s degree in Physical Education. Feeling the urge to serve his country, Hackney enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1976. During his military career he held various jobs related to data processing and personnel. He also served as a United States Army Recruiter for over 12 years and received many distinguished awards such as, the Recruiter’s Gold Badge, Highest Recruiter’s Incentive Award for Exceptional Service, The Recruiter’s Ring and Recruiter of the Year in several different locations. Hackney also served as Senior Guidance Counselor at the Military Entrance Processing Station in Shreveport for several years. “I am so proud to have served my country for over 20 years,” said Hackney, “I enjoyed the service and all the incentives extended to not only me but my family as well.”
Upon returning to Farmerville, Hackney wasted no time jumping into serving the citizens and town of Farmerville. He was elected Farmerville Justice of the Peace in 1997 and he served for over five years. “I am not a man of idleness,” said Hackney, “After serving my country, I continued in the civilian sector.” Hackney was a teacher and a boys and girls basketball coach at Spearsville High School, drove a school bus for Union Parish, served as a certified state safety instructor and bus driver trainer, and performed as a high school basketball referee for 43 years. He also became an entrepreneur in 2005 when he started Hack’s Lawn Service, which he still owns and operates.
Hackney wants the citizens of Farmerville to know that with them, God’s help, and investors, he has many goals that he hopes to accomplish as mayor. He wants to concentrate on the youth of Farmerville. “We need to bring activities here that will keep pushing their development so that they will believe, achieve, and succeed,” Hackney said. Some of these activities that he wants to establish are after school programs, a skating rink, a theater, an extension of sports activities, and a bowling alley. Another goal that Hackney wants to meet focuses on the older citizens of Farmerville. “Since we have been certified officially as a retirement community, I would love to bring back those things that appeal to retirees enjoying their golden years,” Hackney stated. This list of retirement goals includes clothing stores for men and women, ice cream parlor, a family oriented downtown park, and 24-hour stores. Shops and enhancements for both youth and retirees would also bring more jobs, which would help to boost the economy. Hackney would also like to have quarterly meetings where citizens can voice concerns and increase focus on town beautification. “When I was a young man growing up in Farmerville, Hackney remembered, “these types of establishments and enhancements made us the hub of the parish and everybody from neighboring towns and parishes would come and shop and visit.”
While Hackney loves Farmerville, he does realize that there are areas that need a great deal of improvement. “People will come here to fish or enjoy the lake but the revenue often goes to nearby cities that have updated amenities,” said Hackney. “We need to bring in some quality hotels that will encourage tourists to stay and spend their dollars in Farmerville.” Hackney also envisions a truck stop and new industry that will encourage the youth of Farmerville to stay here and raise their families. “I am aware of the changes the world is experiencing right now,” Hackney said, “right now with COVID-19, I know our economy is compromised. However, we are all in this together and we will get through it together. Please wear your mask and continue to social distance so that everyone can stay safe.”
“I want to be a may or for all the people of Farmerville. With the help of God, your support, and votes, I will work hard from day one to achieve my desires for the Town of Farmerville. Please cast your vote for #76 Arthur C. “Boots” Hackney for Mayor of Farmerville.”