GDTAE - Public Officials

John P. (John) Yates of Griffin (R SH 073)

Representative - Georgia House of Representatives
Room 217 State Capitol 206 Washington Street
Atlanta, GA 30334
O: 404.656.5126    H: 770.227.1474    F: 404.656.6700
Email - Web Site

961 Birdie Road
Griffin, GA 30223-6310

Year Elected: 1988
Next Election: 2008
% of Vote
Last Election:
Leg. Rank: 33
Spouse: Annie Harris
DOB: 11/24/1921
ChairmanGa House Defense and Veterans Affairs
MemberGa House Appropriations
MemberGa House Motor Vehicles
MemberGa House Reapportionment
Fayette County
Henry County
Spalding County
County Officials

Born and raised on a farm in Northern Spalding County during the depression, Representative Yates claims they didn’t know they were poor until the government told them. He was able to attend high school on a bond grant, which he had to walk 3 miles to each day before graduating in 1938. He and 3 of his 4 brothers were all actually in WWII; 2 were prisoners of war and one was hospitalized, but they all came back home afterwards. Representative Yates himself was selected as a candidate for Officer School and became a second lieutenant in Field Artillery. His military service included roles in several historical turning points, such as flying over the English Channel shortly after the invasion of Normandy, for which he was awarded a medal. He also played a key role in opening up the battle lines at the Battle of the Bulge, the biggest battle of the war. Apparently, a tank was preventing the opening of battle lines, so Representative Yates flew over him, dropping a can of gasoline onto the tank. The enemy tanker mistakenly thought he was being fired upon and started moving which opened up the battle lines. Aside from military service, Representative Yates began a 35-year career with Ford Motor Company, starting the day the factory opened in Hapefield in 1947. He began as a builder, but later after attending classes at Georgia State University he began being promoted. Promotions carried him all the way to Los Angeles as a parts distribution manager. Representative John Yates was actually the very first Republican candidate ever elected in Spalding County. He began serving in 1989, was defeated in the next election, but won in a landslide victory the following term and has been in office ever since! When asked what drew him into politics, he replied that in his years of traveling with Ford Motor Company, Georgia seemed be the only state that he’d ever lived in that lacked a strong two party system. He wasn’t happy with the representative in his area so his simply ran against him and won. His long service to the state and military experience worked to Representative Yates’ appointment as the Chairman of the Defense and Veterans Affairs Committee. He has always been a strong supporter of America and the military. Chairman Yates is a member of the Voice of the Veterans, an organization that speaks to children about patriotism. He also holds membership in the Appropriations, Higher Education, Reapportionment and Motor Vehicles Committees. The Representative is currently working to require competitive bidding in the education system to make sure that our schools receive the best services and materials possible. He believes in being honest and taking care of the needs of the people. The Representative and his wife have three children, eight grandchildren and one great-grandchild. He and Annie live on a 40-acre farm in Griffin with a gorgeous 2 ½ acre lake, a photograph of which is proudly displayed in his office. Even with the hurriedness that comes with the job of being a legislator, Chairman Yates makes sure that he personally answers every single card and letter that he receives, even if it is to every single member of an elementary school class. He believes in keeping the government simple and making it more user-friendly. He also is committed to making sure that people know what he is doing, for he feels that they have the right to know. All in all, Representative John Yates believes in being a representative.

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