|Richard Phillip "Rick"|
Louisiana State Representative for District 66 (East Baton Rouge Parish)
|Assumed office |
January 11, 2016
|Preceded by||Darrell Ourso|
|Born|| September 12, 1956|
Former resident of Shreveport, Louisiana
Resident of Baton Rouge
|Spouse(s)|| Cynthia "Cindy" Harville Edmonds|
Richard Phillip Edmonds, Jr., known as Rick Edmonds (born September 12, 1956), is a Southern Baptist pastor in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and a Republican member of the Louisiana House of Representatives for District 66.
Edmonds unseated the short-term incumbent Republican, Darrell Ourso, a former member of the East Baton Rouge Parish Metro Council, in the runoff election held on November 21, 2015. Edmonds polled 7,109 votes (52.1 percent) to Ourso's 6,540 (47.9 percent). Ourso had won the position in a special election earlier in the year to fill the seat created by the resignation of Republican Hunter Greene, a Shreveport native who was elected to a Baton Rouge family court judgeship.
Edmonds graduated in 1974 from the former Fair Park High School in Shreveport. He obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree from East Texas Baptist University in Marshall, Texas, and his Master of Divinity and doctoral studies at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the outreach pastor at the large Bethany Church in Baton Rouge He is the former vice president of the Louisiana Family Forum, a conservative faith-based group that lobbies on social issues. He also previously was pastor of Parkview Baptist Church in Baton Rouge. In the campaign, Edmonds hammered Ourso for voting eleven times for tax increases in the 2015 legislative session.
He is a former pastor too of the large Calvary Baptist Church in Shreveport, at which in 2010 he preached the funeral of his mother, Elsie Stone Edmonds. His late father, Richard Edmonds, Sr., owned and operated Louisiana Fence Company in Shreveport. Edmonds and his wife, the former Cynthia "Cindy" Harville, have four sons, Richie Edmonds and wife, Holly, and J. Ben Edmonds and wife, Candice, both couples from Baton Rouge, and Ryan Edmonds and wife, Karla, and Zachary Edmonds and wife, Stephanie, both couples from Shreveport.
In 2018, Representative Edmonds obtained passage of the "Protection of Adoption Act", which seeks to clarify policies in the previously unregulated field of adoption. Edmonds said that "existing law was ambiguous. … This act provides a framework so that adoption is not so confusing." No legislator opposed Edmonds' bill, and Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards signed it into law.
Edmonds was an unsuccessful candidate in the special election held on November 6, 2018, to fill the year remaining in the term of former Louisiana Secretary of State Tom Schedler, who resigned in the spring amidst charges of sexual harassment. The two top vote-getters in the election, the interim incumbent Kyle Ardoin and the African-American court administrator, Gwen Collins-Greenup of Clinton, met in a runoff held on December 8. Others eliminated from the race with Edmonds were his legislative colleague Julie Stokes of Kenner in Jefferson Parish, and former representative and state Senator Almond Gaston "A. G." Crowe, Jr. of Pearl River in St. Tammany Parish. Renee Fontenot Free, who has experience in the offices of both the secretary of state and the Louisiana attorney general, was the official choice of the Louisiana Democratic Executive Committee, but she finished third in the balloting, behind Ardoin and Collins-Greenup, who then picked up the endorsement for the runoff from the Democratic committee. Had he been elected, Edmonds vowed that he would have taken a "watchdog mentality to the secretary of state’s office by doing everything I can to fight against any and all attempts to weaken secure voting. Only Americans who live in Louisiana should be voting. And, when Louisianans vote, their vote should count. End of story."
In the nonpartisan blanket primary held on October 12, 2019, Edmonds handily won reelection. With 12,961 votes (70 percent), he overwhelmed two opponents, Democrat Morgan Lamandre, who received 5,015 votes (27 percent), and the Libertarian nominee, David Smith, who drew 646 votes (3 percent).
- Richard Edmonds, September 1956. Louisiana Secretary of State. Retrieved on November 27, 2015.
- Rebekah Allen (November 21, 2015). District 66 incumbent Darrell Ourso loses seat to Family Forum Vice President. The Baton Rouge Advocate. Retrieved on November 27, 2015.
- Results for Election Date: 11/21/2015. Louisiana Secretary of State. Retrieved on November 27, 2015.
- Rick Edmonds, Class of 1974. classmates.com. Retrieved on January 1, 2016.
- Rick Edmonds, Republican, District 66. house.louisiana.gov. Retrieved on September 12, 2017.
- Mark Ballard (August 12, 2015). Baton Rouge legislator Darrell Ourso hammered on increased taxes at Republican forum. The Baton Rouge Advocate. Retrieved on January 10, 2016.
- Elsie Edmonds. KTBS-TV. Retrieved on December 15, 2015.
- Mark Ballard (Jun3e 4, 2018). New 'Adoption Option Act' to ease adoptions in Louisiana celebrated at the State Capitol. The Baton Rouge Advocate. Retrieved on June 6, 2018.
- Greg Hilburn (July 5, 2018). Secretary of state race: See who's in, who's out. The Monroe News-Star. Retrieved on July 6, 2018.
- Louisiana Secretary of State, Election Returns, October 12, 2019.