William Shirley

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William E. Shirley, Jr.

Mississippi State Representative
for District 84 (Clarke, Jasper, and Newton counties)
In office
January 2012 – January 2020
Preceded by David "Tad" Campbell 
Succeeded by Troy Smith 

Born August 8, 1966
Citizenship American
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Benita Meadows Shirley
Children Three children 
Residence Quitman
Clarke County
Alma mater Quitman High School

Meridian Community College
Missouri Auction School

Occupation Restaurant owner

United States Coast Guard service

Religion Baptist

William E. Shirley, Jr. (born August 8, 1966), is a restaurant owner from Quitman, Mississippi, who is the Republican former state representative for District 84, which encompasses Clarke, Jasper, and Newton counties.[1] He served two terms from 2012 to 2020.

Shirley graduated from Quitman High School in Clarke County and attended Meridian Community College in Meridian in Lauderdale County and the Missouri Auction School. Shirley also served in the United States Coast Guard. He owns the Family Fish Camp restaurant on Causeyville Road in Meridian and is a former district manager for the BellSouth Corporation. He and his wife, the former Benita Meadows, have three children. He is a Baptist.[2]

In the general election held on November 8, 2011, Shirley overwhelmed the Democrat  William G. "Billy" Lee, 7,590 (84.9 percent) to 1,354 (15.1 percent). The position opened when the Republican incumbent David "Tad" Campbell did not seek reelection.[3] For his second term, he ran unopposed in the Republican primary and then the general election held on November 3, 2015.[4]  

Shirley sits on these House committees: (1) Enrolled Bills (vice chairman), (2) Energy, (3) Insurance, (4) Judiciary B, and (5) Medicaid.[2] In 2012, Representative Shirley voted to require identification before one can cast a ballot in Mississippi. In 2014, Representative Shirley co-sponsored the ban on abortions in Mississippi after twenty weeks of gestation. In 2016, he voted against  dismemberment abortions. He opposed the expansion of exemptions for compulsory school vaccinations, but the measure still passed the House. He voted to grant civil and criminal immunity to those reporting what they believe are instances of terrorism. He co-sponsored legislation to permit churches to have designated personnel with firearms for the overall protection of the congregation. He co-sponsored the bill to guarantee protections for religious beliefs and matters of moral conscience. In 2017, he supported the legislation which authorizes additional methods of execution in Mississippi and the measure to classify the killing of first responders as first-degree murder.[5]

See also

Other Mississippi Republican state House members:


  1. William Shirley. Billstatus.ls.state.ms.us. Retrieved on October 12, 2017.
  2. 2.0 2.1 William Shirley's Biography. Project Vote Smart. Retrieved on October 12, 2017.
  3. Election Returns. Mississippi Secretary of State (November 8, 2011). Retrieved on October 12, 2017.
  4. General election returns. Mississippi Secretary of State (November 3, 2015). Retrieved on October 12, 2017.
  5. William Shirley's Voting Record. Project Vote Smart. Retrieved on October 12, 2017.