Dan A. Sullivan

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Dan Alan Sullivan

Arkansas State Representative for
District 53 (Craighead and Greene counties)
Assumed office 
January 2015
Preceded by Homer Lenderman

Born April 15, 1950
Place of birth missing
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Maria Stewart Sullivan (married 1982)
Children Matthew Stewart Sullivan

Ann Sullivan Ojeda

Residence Jonesboro, Arkansas
Alma mater Parkway Central High School (Chesterfield, Missouri

Arkansas State University (Jonesboro)
Northeast Missouri State University (Kirksville)

Religion Church of Christ
Website http://www.sullivanforarkansas.com

Not to be confused with Daniel Scott "Dan" Sullivan, the junior U.S. Senator from Alaska

Dan Alan Sullivan (born April 15, 1950)[1] is an educator-turned-businessman from Jonesboro, Arkansas, who is a Republican state representative for District 53 in Craighead and Greene counties in the northeastern portion of his state.


Sullivan graduated in 1968 from Parkway Central High School in suburban Chesterfield in St. Louis County, Missouri. He holds a Bachelor of Education degree, with focus on Science from Arkansas State University in Jonesboro, where he played basketball in the early 1970s for the Arkansas State Indians, known since 2008 as the Arkansas State Red Wolves.[2] He earned a Master of Education degree from Northeast Missouri State University, Kirksville, Missouri , since named Truman State University.[3] As principal] at South Elementary School in Jonesboro, Sullivan suspended an eight-year-old boy for three days after the child pointed a chicken finger at a teacher and said, "Pow, Pow, Pow." Sullivan said that the child had made a threat, which "depends on the tone, the demeanor, and ... the intent. It's not the object in the hand, it’s the thought in the mind." The incident drew national attention.[4]

After a quarter-century in education as a teacher and principal, Sullivan in 2004 joined the staff, with duties also including lobbying, of the Jonesboro Pediatric Clinic, an entity engaged in children's developmental disorders and mental health care. In 2013, he became the Ascent chief operating officer. He is also a board member of the state Chamber of Commerce.[3]

In 1982, Sullivan married Maria Stewart (born 1950), a native of Monette in Craighead County.[5] They have two children, Matthew Stewart Sullivan (born 1984 in Memphis, Tennessee), a 2006 graduate of Missouri State University in Springfield, who played on the golf team,[6] and Ann Sullivan Ojeda.[2] The Sullivans are member of the Southwest Church of Christ in Jonesboro, at which he is an elder or shepherd.[3][7][8][9] They are both active in WolfLife, a ministry on the ASU campus. Mrs. Sullivan is also an ASU graduate.[10][7]

Political life

On November 12, 2013, Sullivan lost a Republican runoff election for the District 21 seat in the Arkansas State Senate to John Cooper, a retiree from American Telephone & Telegraph] in Jonesboro, who then won the special election in January 2014 for the remaining months in the term of the Democrat Paul Bookout of Jonesboro. Bookout resigned from the Senate after the Arkansas Ethics Commission fined him $8,000 for diverting campaign money for personal use. A third candidate in the special Senate race, Charles L. "Chad" Niell (born c. 1961) of Jonesboro, endorsed Sullivan in the runoff against Cooper.[10]

Three months later on May 20, 2014, Sullivan won the regular party nomination for the state House in District 53. He then unseated Democratic incumbent Homer Lenderman of Paragould in the November 4 general election in which Sullivan's party swept most of the offices in Arkansas. Sullivan polled 3,830 votes (52.9 percent) to Lenderman's 3,416 (47.1 percent).[11][9]

Representative Sullivan is assigned to the legislative committees on: (1) Joint Performance Review, (2) Aging, Children, Youth, Legislative and Military Affairs, (3) Public Health, Welfare and Labor.[3]

In February 2015, Sullivan joined dozens of his fellow Republicans and two Democrats in co-sponsoring legislation submitted by Representative Lane Jean of Magnolia, to reduce unemployment compensation benefits. The measure was promptly signed into law by Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson.[12]

In March 2015, Representative Sullivan proposed legislation to expand the concealed carry of weapons in Arkansas to include schools, churches, polling places, bars, and government buildings. It would still be illegal to bring guns to courthouses, jails, airports, and other placed prohibited by federal law.[13] That same month, Sullivan sponsored legislation on the House floor which would have allowed tele-medicine companies to offer services within the state, as now permitted in forty-nine states. The measure lost in the House, forty-one to twenty-one, with two abstentions. According to Sullivan, his bill addressed the performance of "certain primary care activities ... and diagnoses over the phone and over video." The bill excluded exchanges via email or text messaging and required that physicians in Arkansas make the diagnoses.[14]Stephen Magie, a Democratic representative from Conway in Faulkner County said that he opposed Sullivan's measure because some of the providers would not have an established relationship with a patient and lack familiarity with the medical history of the patient.[14] The practice of tele-medicine increased greatly during the Coronavirus pandemic of 2020.

Sullivan opposes the Common Core State Standards Initiative because he considers the measure state control from Washington, D.C. He has a concealed carry permit. He is pro-life, believes that human life begins with conception, and opposes taxpayer funding of abortion.[10]


  1. Dan Sullivan (Alan). Mylife.com. Retrieved on September 20, 2020.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Max Brantley (August 26, 2013). News Release from Dan Sullivan. The Arkansas Times. Retrieved on September 20, 2020.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Dan Sullivan. arkansashouse.org. Retrieved on April 5, 2015; page no longer on-line.
  4. Dan Sullivan and the Thought Police. Our Voices Arkansas (October 14, 2013). Retrieved on September 20, 2020.
  5. A Note from Dan. sullivanforarkansas.com. Retrieved on April 6, 2015.
  6. Matt Sullivan Bio. missouristatebears. Retrieved on April 6, 2015.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Dan A. Sullivan. intelius.com. Retrieved on April 5, 2015.
  8. Dan Sullivan's Biography. Project Vote Smart. Retrieved on September 20, 2020.
  9. 9.0 9.1 David Ramsey (October 30, 2014). Who Will run the Arkansas House? District 53 (Craighead County). The Arkansas Times. Retrieved on April 6, 2015.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Dan Sullivan. ballotpedia.org. Retrieved on September 20, 2020.
  11. District 53. ballotpedia.org. Retrieved on September 20, 2020.
  12. HB 1489 - Reduces Unemployment Benefits - Key Vote. Project Vote Smart. Retrieved on September 20, 2020.
  13. Arkansas bill to allow guns at bars, polling places, Capitol. KSLA-TV (Shreveport, Louisiana) (March 4, 2015; updated August 26, 2015). Retrieved on September 20, 2020.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Aditi Pai (March 24, 2015). Arkansas legislators vote down pro-tele-medicine bill. Mobil Health News. Retrieved on September 20, 2020.