Teague stepping down as Roe's district office director

Rick Wagner • Oct 11, 2017 at 10:00 PM

BLOUNTVILLE — John Abe Teague is retiring from working for Tennessee U.S. Rep. Phil Roe, R-1st, for the second time.

Teague announced to the NETWORKS — Sullivan Partnership Wednesday morning that he is stepping down as Roe’s district office director effective Oct. 31 and will be replaced by Roe field representative Bill Darden.

The announcement came at the end of the meeting attended by both Teague and Darden, with Teague praising local officials including Tri-Cities Airport Executive Director Patrick Wilson, who also attended the economic development meeting.

NETWORKS is a regional economic development group for Sullivan County, Kingsport, Bristol, Tenn., and Bluff City that also markets the Phipps Bend Industrial Park in Hawkins County.

 “This has been very much on the down low,” Darden said after the meeting, adding that Teague will be available for consultations after Oct. 31.

 “I’ve had John Abe on speed dial for 40 years,” Darden said. 

“He’ll make himself available to us,” Darden said. “He’ll be a part of Team Roe as long as the congressman is in office.”

Teague, who raises certified Angus beef cattle on his farm in Telford in Washington County, said he plans on concentrating on his farm, family and church.

“I think he’s one of the finest people in the region,” Wilson said after the meeting. Teague was a chairman of the Tri-Cities Airport Commission, a forerunner of the Airport Authority now in place.

Teague, in an interview after the meeting and during his presentation to NETWORKS, said he started with the Roe campaign for Congress in late 2007 and was treasurer during the 2008 campaign, all the while working at the Bank of Tennessee. He then went to work as a field representative in early 2009 and stayed until February of 2015. However, he came back in December after the retirement of then-District Director Bill Snodgrass of Hawkins County.

So Teague has worked for Roe in some capacity for more than eight of Roe’s nine years in office. Roe’s seat will be on the ballot in 2018.

 “I’m going to be involved in my community. I’m going to concentrate on family, church and farm,” Teague said, adding that he also plans to take a “good, big breath” starting Nov. 1. “I’m done with getting up every morning and putting a tie on.”

Before working for Roe, Teague worked for Farm Bureau for 30 years and then was in business development for the Bank of Tennessee for 3.5 years. 

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