County board chooses replacement for senator who resigned to run for Congress

Posted: Updated:
The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors appointed Rick Gray to fill Debbie Lesko's seat in the state Senate. (Source: Maricopa County) The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors appointed Rick Gray to fill Debbie Lesko's seat in the state Senate. (Source: Maricopa County)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors made its choice of who will replace Republican Debbie Lesko in the state Senate.

They unanimously appointed Rick Gray as the new state senator for District 21.

He had been previously elected to the House, representing District 9 from 2011 to 2013 and then District 21 from 2013 to 2017 and was House Majority Whip.

[SPECIAL SECTION: Arizona Politics]

Gray had run for Arizona Corporation Commission in the 2016 but lost in the Republican primary.

District 21 covers a lot of the northwest part of the Valley, including Peoria, El Mirage and Sun City.

“Rick knows his way around the Capitol,” said District 4 Supervisor Clint Hickman in a statement. “As the House Majority Whip, he had experience building relationships and pushing through an agenda to benefit District 21 and the entire state.  I’m confident he’ll take what he learned and represent the Northwest Valley well in the Senate.”

Lesko stepped down from her position in the Arizona Senate in order to run for the seat vacated by U.S. Rep. Trent Franks.

[READ MORE: Rep. Trent Franks resigns immediately amid surrogacy allegation]

About a dozen Republicans and three Democrats are seeking Franks' old seat after one GOP hopeful withdrew. A primary is set for next month, followed by an April general election.

[RELATED: 13 Republicans, 3 Democrats file for ex-US Rep. Franks seat]

[READ MORE: Gov. Ducey sets special election for Franks' seat]

Click/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app.

Copyright 2018 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.