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Quarles says he's staying in public sector, teases imminent announcement on future plans

Commissioner Ryan Quarles FB

Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles says he’ll have an announcement in a few days about his future plans.

With six months left in office, Quarles has been speculated as a running mate for Republican gubernatorial nominee Daniel Cameron. Speaking in Bowling Green on Tuesday, Quarles said he’s had conversations with Cameron about the number two spot.

“They’re very positive conversations, and I’m going to stick with public service," he told WKU Public Radio. "I’ll have an announcement about what I’m doing next in the next few days.”

Quarles addressed the Kentucky Association of Conservation Districts. As for his future in the public eye, he told the gathering, "I’m not done yet, so stay tuned.”

Quarles finished in 2nd place behind Cameron in the May primary. As a former state representative, he’s well-known in Frankfort and a native of Central Kentucky, which was a battleground area in the 2019 race for governor.

Quarles declined to say if he has applied to become the next president of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System.

A national search is underwayto fill the vacancy and Quarles recently earned a doctorate in education.

He didn’t respond directly when asked if he was interested in leading KCTCS.

“As the son of an educator and someone who has spent time teaching in the classroom and has done academic research, I think we need a strong leader to help improve educational outcomes in Kentucky," Quarles commented.

The deadline to apply for the KCTCS presidency isn’t until Aug. 11, but Quarles reiterated he’ll have an announcement "in a few days" about his future plans.

Lisa is a Scottsville native and WKU alum. She has worked in radio as a news reporter and anchor for 18 years. Prior to joining WKU Public Radio, she most recently worked at WHAS in Louisville and WLAC in Nashville. She has received numerous awards from the Associated Press, including Best Reporter in Kentucky. Many of her stories have been heard on NPR.
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