Meant for More

Meant for More
Posted Jan 27th, 2023

Marcus Paramore learned early in life that giving back to others can really make a difference. He learned this lesson as a young man by witnessing it firsthand, through spending time spent the Boys Club of Dothan, known today as the Boys & Girls Club Wiregrass.

Now, Paramore is in a position to expand the area he can give back to by serving in the Alabama House of Representatives. Voters chose him to represent District 89, which includes Pike County and a portion of Dale County.

“I wanted to get involved, and the best way to do it is to put your name on the ballot to serve. I’ve enjoyed every moment of it,” Paramore says.

His early days

Paramore is originally from Dothan. His parents, Bill and Donna, who are now deceased, both left a lasting impression on their son about what it means to serve others. He still uses those lessons today.

Bill Paramore retired from the military and took a job as a schoolteacher. Donna Paramore worked as a piano teacher and later took a job as the administrative assistant for the Boys Club of Dothan, a youth development and leadership after-school program.

Paramore has fond memories of spending time at the Boys Club after school while his mother worked. There he played in the peewee basketball and football leagues. He credits the club with preparing him to evolve from a shy kid into a college student and later launching his career.

“I got to interact with other youths from so many different backgrounds,” he says. “As you grow up and start working, you get to work with those kids and are able to get in front of civic groups to talk about what the club means to you.”

Paramore graduated from Northview High School in Dothan in 1984. His first career aspiration was to become an orthodontist. “There was an orthodontist who worked with the club and he kind of became my mentor,” he says.

Launching a career

As he got older, Paramour’s professional path shifted a bit and he decided he wanted a career that involved sports. He enrolled at Troy University after high school, where he studied economics and sports and fitness management. He earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degree from Troy with the intention of following his dream of working in athletics.

But, when he became a staffer for a political campaign in 1992, his plans changed again. “I got bit by the political bug,” he says. “I got an opportunity to work on the campaign and it led to a career. Everything just kept building toward that ultimate goal of serving others.”

From 1992-1997, Paramore worked on the staff of Terry Everett, who defeated George Wallace Jr. for the 2nd Congressional District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Working on this campaign scratched Paramore’s political itch for a bit, but his interest in politics never waned. In 1997 he accepted a position in the athletic department at Troy University as the director of development. During Paramore’s tenure with Troy University athletics,  the program rose from an NCAA Division II school to a Division I-A school.

During a meeting with the university’s chancellor in 2003 Paramore got his chance to jump back into politics. “I was giving the athletic report and we started talking about Congressman Everett and his views,” Paramore says. From there, he became the director of government relations for Troy University.

Now, he is retired from the university to focus on representing his constituents in Montgomery. His wife, Leigh Ann, is employed at Troy University as the director of grants and contracts. The couple has two sons, Bradley and Cody. Bradley is 24 and in graduate school at the University of Southern Mississippi. Cody is 21 and studies graphic engineering at Wallace State Community College in Dothan.

The Paramore family includes, from left, Bradley, Leigh Ann, Marcus and Cody.

Entering politics

Paramore ran for, and won, a seat on the Troy City Council, serving from 2012-2022, with six of those years as council president. He resigned from the council after winning the Alabama House of Representatives seat on Nov. 8, 2022.

“I would’ve loved to have stayed on the council, but I thought it was time to serve District 89 and give that my full attention,” Paramore says.

The city of Troy saw a lot of economic growth during Paramore’s city council tenure, including the arrival of businesses and large industries to the area, which created about 700 jobs. For example, Kimber Firearms located its corporate office in Troy, providing nearly 400 jobs.

The council wanted to focus on bringing retail and restaurant activity to the city, and construction recently began on a Baumhower’s Victory Grille and a bowling alley. There will also be a new hotel built along with some other restaurants in that area.

“We really wanted to focus on bringing a quality of life to the citizens,” Paramore says about the arrival of Publix and the shopping center that features a Hobby Lobby, TJ Maxx, Ulta and Ross Dress for Less.

Paramore says some of his main goals during his term in the state legislature are bringing more jobs to the district and improving the quality of life for citizens. “I want to make sure our children and grandchildren are able to get a quality education and make sure this stays a great area to live, worship and play,” he says.

South Alabama Electric Cooperative members make up a large percentage of Paramore’s district, and he plans to advocate for the cooperative and its members while in Montgomery.

“I want to make sure they have the resources and support they need to provide high-quality service to their members,” he says.

SAEC General Manager David Bailey is pleased to have another strong representative headed to Montgomery to represent the cooperative members.

“Our area has been blessed to have great representation in Montgomery over the years and we know that Marcus will continue that tradition during his term,” Bailey says. “He has a strong resume and has already done great work for our area. I am excited to see that continue as he heads to Montgomery.”

Paramore says it’s humbling to look back at how far he has come since his days at the Boys Club in Dothan. But he is excited to use the lessons he’s learned along the way to serve the citizens of District 89.

“Being elected as a state representative was a big moment for me and it’s a chance to move up and help more than just the one community I live in,” Paramore says. “It’s humbling that the people selected me to represent them in Montgomery.” 

Group of clapping people stand on steps behind man at podium

Paramore announced his intentions to run for a seat in the state house in downtown Troy.