Sederick Charles Rice, Ph.D., a biology professor at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff and chair of the Arkansas Minority Health Commission, is seeking a Ward 1 seat on the Pine Bluff City Council.
"As a native of this wonderful city, graduate of the Pine Bluff school system, and alumnus and now faculty at UAPB, my love and commitment to this community is interwoven into who I am," Rice said. "Now, I am taking the step to put my love for this community into action by seeking to represent Ward 1 on the Pine Bluff City Council."
Rice would develop and support progressive legislation that moves the city forward, according to a news release.
"I came back to Pine Bluff with the goal to support young scholars learning at my alma mater and give back to the community that raised me and is responsible for my personal and professional success," he said.
Rice holds a biology/life science K7-12 teaching license from Arkansas and often provides educational outreach to area high school students and teachers. He is a member of the board of the Ivy Center for Education, is site director of the UAPB HBCU Med-Track medical school pipeline program, a member of the Pine Bluff Jefferson County UAPB/AM&N Alumni chapter and is chair of the UAPB Faculty/Staff Senate.
He also authored two books, "Four Tubas, A Guitar, and a Gallery of Cheerleaders: Transition in the Life of a Black Ph.D." (2010) and "StepDads Showing Up & Showing Out: Tips for Navigating the Complex World of Blended Families" (2020), according to the release.
Rice's campaign will focus on four themes: (1) reducing crime and strengthening the city's commitments and support for police, fire, EMTs, and front-line health care workers, (2) expanding workforce development and technical education training opportunities for youths, (3) supporting entrepreneurship and small-business initiatives, and (4) facilitating strategic partnerships between the city of Pine Bluff, UAPB, Southeast Arkansas College, local school district administrators, teachers, parents and students.
The son of the late Charles and Shirley Ann Rice, Rice lives in and has maintained a home in Ward 1 for the last 30 years and was educated in and graduated from the Pine Bluff School District. He is married with children and his keys to success are a strong relationship and belief in God, impactful mentors and supportive family and friends, according to the release.
"I do not have all the answers, but I am willing to listen to the people, learn, and earn their votes. I believe we can transform the city of Pine Bluff into the best version of itself. I am asking for your support and vote on May 24, 2022, to become a member of the Pine Bluff City Council, as a representative of Ward 1. May God Bless the citizens of Pine Bluff! May God Bless the city of Pine Bluff," he said.