On Thursday, State Representative Andy Thomas (R-Brazil) officially resigned from his post to join the Indiana Attorney General's Office, effective today.
Thomas and State Attorney General Steve Carter made the joint announcement at Greencastle City Hall Thursday.
"We're thrilled to have somebody of (Thomas') qualifications to come to the Attorney General's office," Carter said Thursday. "His substantial career as an attorney is something we're looking for."
Thomas has served District 44 since 2002. The seat serves all of Putnam County and portions of Clay, Parke and Vigo counties. He is the Vice-Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee and is a member of the Courts and Criminal Code Committee. He was Chairman of Elections Committee and also served on the Technology and Development Committee.
Thomas will be a Deputy Attorney General, serving in the Administrative and Regulatory Litigation Division of the office. His focus will be on issues concerning the Family and Social Services Administration.
"I look forward to working with the Attorney General," Thomas said Thursday. "This is a great opportunity to work for the state of Indiana.
"I worked with the Attorney General's office while in Law School, and I loved it."
Carter said his office sought to bring Thomas into the fold.
"We wanted him to join us as soon as possible," Carter said. "There are a lot of challenging cases in front of us.
"We work very hard to bring seasoned attorneys to the office. His skills were what we were looking for."
Earlier this year, Thomas announced he would not seek reelection to the District 44 seat, citing a desire to spend more time with his family and to continue teaching at Ivy Tech Community College, Greencastle. He currently teaches one Wednesday evening class at the school and has been an adjunct professor at Ivy Tech and Indiana State University for the past 15 years.
Despite taking the new position, Thomas said he will still be able to spend time with his family and continue teaching, his reasonings behind leaving the District 44 seat.
"Believe me, I will be spending time with my family," he said. "But (The House) is not in session. Since I'm not a candidate, I have very minimal duties."
Carter said having attorneys outside of Marion County is something his office wants.
"We have many people around the state working for the Attorney General's office," Carter said.
On Thursday, Thomas said he is proud of what the was able to accomplish while representing District 44.
"It was a privilege to serve the citizens of District 44," Thomas said. "I feel like I moved the ball forward. But a State Representative is not entitled to a lifetime position.
"It has been an honor to serve the people of District 44 for the past four years. Althought it is difficult to leave the House, I am confident that my efforts will be carried on in the Attorney General's office."
Thomas' father, Amos, was chosen by a caucus as the Republican nominee for the District 44 seat in the State House of Representatives.
Amos, a Brazil native, was selected over Putnam County residents Ken Eitel, Darwyn Nelson, Jeremy M. Carver and Katheryn E. Deer.
Thomas served two terms in the House, winning the seat in the 2002 election and winning again in 2004.
Earlier this year, Thomas announced he would not to run for the seat again.
The Republican Party has 30 days to caucus to find a replacement for Thomas.