Tennessee State Sen. Jim Tracy has resigned (R-Shelbyville) after accepting an appointment from President Donald Trump.
Over the weekend, Trump appointed the Republican state senator as Tennessee rural development director for the U.S. Agriculture Department. Tracy submitted his resignation letter Monday morning.
"Serving the people of the 14th Senatorial District has been the honor of my lifetime. I'm proud of my record over the past 13 years and thankful for the many friendships I've made along the way," Tracy said.
Tracy is an insurance agent and former college basketball referee from Shelbyville who has served in the state Senate since 2004. He fell 38 votes shy in his primary challenge of U.S. Rep. Scott DesJarlais in 2014.
Republican Senate Speaker Randy McNally of Oak Ridge in a statement called Tracy "an outstanding hire" for the Trump administration.
Tracy this year was a major proponent of Republican Gov. Bill Haslam's transportation funding program that included a 6-cent gas tax hike to tackle a backlog of road projects.
A Special Election will be held to fill the seat.