William Atkins (Louisiana politician)

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William B. Atkins, Sr.

Louisiana State Senator for District 32
(Caldwell, Catahoula, Concordia, Franklin, LaSalle, Rapides,
and Tensas parishes)
In office
1984–1988
Preceded by Dan Richey
Succeeded by Steve Thompson

Louisiana State Representative
for District 21 (Catahoula, Concordia, and Tensas parishes)
In office
1980–1984
Preceded by Dan Richey
Succeeded by Al Ater

Born June 20, 1947
Place of birth missing
Political party Democrat
Children William Atkins, Jr.

Parents:
Barney Luther, Sr., and Levia Lilly Breithaupt Atkins

Residence Jonesville, Catahoula Parish
Alma mater Northwestern State University
(Natchitoches)
Occupation Businessman

William B. Atkins, Sr., known as Bill Atkins (born June 20, 1947), is a businessman from rural Jonesville in Catahoula Parish in northeastern Louisiana, who served for single terms, consecutively, as a state representative from 1980 to 1988[1] and a state senator from 1984 to 1988.[2]

A Democrat, Atkins succeeded District 21 Representative Dan Richey, then of Ferriday in Concordia Parish, who left the House after one term to run successfully for the District 32 seat in the state Senate. Then in the 1983 primary election Atkins unseated Richey after one term in the Senate by a large margin, 28,724 (64.6 percent) to 15,776 (35.5 percent). This was the same election in which former Governor Edwin Edwards staged his comeback against Republican David C. Treen.[3] Four years later, Steve D. Thompson, a real estate agent from Winnsboro in Franklin Parish then unseated Atkins after a single Senate term in the 1987 primary. Thompson received 21,576 votes (50.27 percent) in a four-candidate field. Atkins trailed with 15,988 (37.3 percent), nearly the same total that Richey had polled in 1983.[4]

Atkins's parents were Barney Luther Atkins, Sr (1911-1956), who died when William was nine years of age, and the former Levia Lilly Breithaupt (1915-2015). His father owned Central Building Company and Atkins Novelty Company, both in Jonesville, and held considerable real estate. He was a member of the Jonesville Town Council at the time of his death.[5] After the death of Barney Atkins, his widow operated her husband's two businesses , along with Catahoula Courts, A&T Drug Store, and APA Farms.[6]

Atkins attended Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana.[7] He formerly owned the Miss-Lou Truck Stop, Inc., in Vidalia in Concordia Parish, which was incorporated in 1994 but is inactive.[8] He owns the Miss Lou Internet Service at 521 Main Street in Natchez, Mississippi.[9]

Since leaving the legislature, Atkins has contributed to a former House colleague, Francis C. Thompson of Delhi in Richland Parish, who served in the state Senate between his nonconsecutive terms in the House. Thompson in 1996 ran against Republican John Cooksey for Louisiana's 5th congressional district seat in the United States House of Representatives.[10]

References

  1. Membership in the Louisiana House of Representatives, 1812-2024: Concordia Parish. Louisiana House of Representatives. Retrieved on February 4, 2021.
  2. Membership of the Louisiana State Senate, 1880-2024. Retrieved on February 4, 2021.
  3. Louisiana Secretary of State, Primary Election Returns, October 22, 1983.
  4. Louisiana Secretary of State, Primary Election Returns, October 24, 1987.
  5. Barney Luther Atkins, Sr.. findagrave.com. Retrieved on February 4, 2021.
  6. Levia Lilly Breithaupt Atkins. findagrave.com. Retrieved on February 4, 2021.
  7. William B. Atkins. intelius.com. Retrieved on February 4, 2021.
  8. Miss-Lou Truck Stop, Inc. bizapedia.com. Retrieved on February 4, 2021.
  9. Miss Lou Internet Service. miss-lou-internet-service.natchez.ms. Retrieved on February 4, 2021.
  10. JONESVILLE, Louisiana (LA) Political Contributions by Individuals. city-data.com. Retrieved on February 4, 2021.