State Legislator of the Month – October
In October, we made a special selection for the State Legislator of the Month. We are delighted to announce our Alabama State Chairs, Senator Dan Roberts, and Representative Arnold Mooney, co-recipients. This award highlights substantive state policy successes and acknowledges those who care about the principles at ALEC’s core – limited government, federalism, and individual liberty. Senator Roberts and Representative Mooney are lawmakers who embrace ALEC’s principles to serve their constituents.
Senator Dan Roberts, Alabama State Chair, Alabama State Senate District 15 (left)
Representative Arnold Mooney II, Alabama State Chair, Alabama House of Representatives District 43 (right)
As engaged members since joining ALEC, Roberts, and Mooney have been a driving force in Alabama pushing public policy and encouraging legislators to utilize the resources and support that ALEC offers. In addition to their dedication to public policy and engagement with ALEC, we want to acknowledge them for being instrumental in the planning of the ALEC Health and Human Services Academy that took place in Roberts’ backyard in Birmingham, Alabama in October.
The purpose of the Health and Human Services Academy was to offer legislators and partners alike the opportunity to hear from the nation’s leading policy experts. Together, Roberts and Mooney were fantastic hosts for the ALEC team and attendees representing 14 states. One reason for holding the Academy in Alabama was to open the discussion around keeping Birmingham competitive with other biotech centers like Cambridge and Silicon Valley.
Dan Roberts has been serving in the State Senate for the past three years. During this past legislative session, Roberts’ committee assignments were Chair of the Local Legislation Shelby County Committee and Vice Chair of the Transportation and Energy Committee, among many others. Roberts graduated with a bachelor’s degree in building construction from Auburn University and earned a master’s degree in real estate and urban affairs from Georgia State University. Since graduating, Roberts has had an entrepreneurial mindset. He started an international trading company in South Korea and soon after, founded his own real estate company, several startup businesses, and engaged in other international trade opportunities including in Brazil.
Senator Roberts has been a leader on tax reform in Alabama as well, spearheading an effort in the Alabama Senate to modernize Alabama’s tax code, with an eye on enhancing economic competitiveness. Senator Roberts’ efforts were successful and also “ensure that federal stimulus funds derived from the CARES Act and subsequent coronavirus relief legislation are not subject to state income taxes.” We congratulate Senator Roberts for his tireless work to move the tax discussion in Alabama towards commonsense principles, like those outlined in the ALEC Principles of Taxation.
Arnold Mooney has been serving in the House of Representatives for the past seven years. In 2016, Mooney was an at-large delegate to the Republican National Convention from Alabama. Mooney graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Samford University. He has spent over 40 years working as a professional businessman in commercial real estate. Mooney, coming from a large family and the proud grandfather of 10, said, “Freedom isn’t transmitted through the bloodstream. It has to be taught and it has to be protected for each new generation.”
A profile on Mooney by the Yellowhammer News says, “Since taking office in 2014, Mooney sponsored and co-sponsored 22 bills that passed, several received national attention. National labor unions increased their efforts to organize industrial facilities across the southeast and experienced successes that included, Volkswagen in Tennessee and Golden Dragon in Wilcox County, prompted Mooney to sponsor and pass a constitutional amendment establishing Alabama as a “right-to-work” state. This provides non-union workers with blanket employment protections. Voters concurred and ratified Mooney’s constitutional amendment by a 70 percent to 30 percent margin on the 2016 election ballot.
ALEC has had the honor to work closely with Senator Dan Roberts and Representative Arnold Mooney throughout their time serving in the legislature and cannot be happier to honor them together for the State Legislator of the Month award. We look forward to continuing our work with Senator Roberts, Representative Mooney, and their colleagues as we head into the next legislative session.
Congratulations, Senator Roberts, and Representative Mooney, on being the newest State Legislators of the Month!