Three more candidates have tossed their proverbial hats into the ring for the U.S. Congressional District 17 seat to replace retiring Congressman Bill Flores.

Todd Kent, a Bryan-College Station resident, filed for the March 3 Republican primary on Friday, according to the Texas GOP website. Kent has a doctorate degree in political science from Texas A&M University and has worked for multiple higher education institutions, including his alma mater.

Kent served as the assistant dean for academic affairs and a member of the political science faculty at Texas A&M University’s Qatar campus for nine years, according to his campaign website. He most recently worked as head of campus at the University of Utah’s Asia Campus in South Korea.

In 1988, Kent organized George H.W. Bush’s campaign for president for 30 Texas counties, including those in Congressional District 17, his website states. In the 1994 election cycle, he consulted on the campaigns for all of the Republican State Board of Education candidates.

“This CD 17 election is not about electing someone who will simply vote Republican,” Kent said in a press release. “It is about electing a Republican leader who can broaden our base and build coalitions that can change the course of our future.”

Waco real estate agent Kristen Alamo Rowin has announced she also will seek the Republican nomination for the U.S. District 17 seat. Rowin became a licensed real estate agent at 18, according to her campaign website. She obtained her real estate broker’s license and founded Alamo Real Estate by 25.

“The purpose of government is to protect the rights of the people,” Rowin states on her website. “These rights were given by God, not government. Let’s get back to the basics of freedom, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

Rowin also states on her website that she knows she will need hundreds of thousands of dollars or even millions to run a successful campaign but believes in grassroots fundraising.

“I do not believe it was the intention of our founding fathers to have only wealthy people or those who have access to such large campaign budgets represent their district,” she states on her website.

Additionally, David Anthony Jaramillo, a former Marine who served in Iraq, has announced he will seek the Democratic nomination for the U.S. District 17 seat.

Jaramillo is a longtime resident of McLennan County and former employee of the Department of Veterans Affairs, according to a press release. His father also served on active duty in the Marine Corps for 20 years. Jaramillo enlisted in the Marines after graduating from Mart High School in 2005.

After serving in Iraq, Jaramillo reenlisted and was stationed in Quantico, Virginia, attached to the White House Military Office, where he obtained a Top Secret Yankee White security clearance and was awarded a Presidential Service Badge. He and his family moved back to Waco in 2013.

Rick Kennedy, a software engineer from Travis County who opposed Flores in the 2018 election, plans to seek the Democratic nomination for the congressional seat again in March.

Other Republicans have announced they will seek the nomination for U.S. House District 17 seat, including former U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions.

Waco native Scott Bland, owner of a longtime local construction company, filed Nov. 13 to seek the Republican nomination for the District 17 seat. Bland attended Baylor University before serving five years as a U.S. Secret Service agent. He returned to Waco in 2006 to take over the family business, Jim Bland Construction Co.

Other Republican candidates seeking the nomination include George W. Hindman, a Pflugerville-based candidate, and Ahmad Adnan, an Austin-based candidate, according to the Federal Elections Commission website.

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Brooke Crum joined the Tribune-Herald as the education reporter in January 2019. She has worked for the Springfield News-Leader in Missouri, Abilene Reporter-News, Beaumont Enterprise and the Port Arthur News. Crum graduated from TCU in Fort Worth.

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