WICHITA FALLS, Tx (RNN Texoma) - John Gillespie was born and raised in Burkburnett and worked for the Wichita County District Attorney's Office for over 16 years. But he recently resigned as lead Assistant District Attorney to run for Wichita County District Attorney.
"I've always heard people should put their money where their mouth is," Gillespie said. "And I gave up my salary and my health benefits because I was so passionate that the issues that I saw required new leadership."
He said some of those issues include the DA's office losing 11 of 18 prosecutors in two years, current District Attorney Maureen Shelton not carrying a full caseload for five and a half years, and the lack of CPS attorneys.
"I looked at those issues and I realized that we really need fresh leadership and fresh vision in the district attorney's office," he said.
Gillespie said he will spend more time in the courtroom.
"I am so passionate about being an active district attorney who carries a caseload, who is in court fighting for justice," Gillespie said. "Will it be easy? No. But I will never choose an easy path for my life."
He said he will also create a financial crimes and identity theft unit to help protect small businesses and the public from becoming victims.
"I will re-deploy those budget resources and I will change the culture in the office," Gillespie said.
He credits his parents for where he is today, and what he's trying to accomplish.
"They instilled in me such a tremendous work ethic," Gillespie said. "And I will bring that work ethic and everything that is within me to fulfill these commitments that I am making. This community deserves a district attorney who is in court leading by his example. And that is the type of district attorney that I will be."