Former chancellor’s law license suspended

Sandra ClarkLet's Talk

Former Chancellor Clarence E. “Eddie” Pridemore Jr. is no longer an attorney in the state of Tennessee. His law license was suspended December 20, 2023, according to the Board of Professional Responsibility of the Supreme Court of Tennessee. No reason was given.

Clarence Pridemore

State records list his address as 1613 Coronada Lane, Knoxville TN 37922, but the Knox County Trustee’s records show the residential property owned by Bryan D. Snapp. (All taxes are paid.)

Pridemore, a Republican, defeated Division II Chancellor Daryl Fansler, a Democrat, in August 2014 by a vote of 30,427 to 23,311. Chancellors John Weaver and Mike Moyers, both Republicans, won reelection that same day, running unopposed in Divisions I and III and polling over 40,000 votes each. A good discussion of that race appears on KnoxViews.

Pridemore was licensed to practice law in 2011 after graduating from Nashville School of Law.

When he ran for re-election in May 2022, Pridemore finished third in a three-candidate Republican Primary. Votes were Richard “Bud” Armstrong, 14,013; R. Deno Cole, 7,836; and Pridemore, 5,347. Armstrong won the August election and is a year into an eight-year term.

Five-year pledge from term-limited mayor

Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs was the star of a press release from Roane State Community College last month announcing a $500,000 “pledge” to Roane State Foundation in support of the Knox Regional Health Science Education Center, a new Roane State facility being constructed near Parkwest Medical Center in West Knox County. (We wrote about the facility here and here.)

The first $100,000 has been sent with plans to donate the same amount each year over the next four years, read the press release.

I asked if Knox County Commission had OK’d this.

“Yes,” said Commissioner John Schoonmaker, vice chair of the Finance Committee. “It was approved at the August 27, 2023, meeting. Agenda Item #31 – Resolution # R-23-8-803. The appropriation was for $100,000. with a 5-year commitment.  It was initiated by Mayor Jacobs.”

But how can you obligate future mayors and commissions?

“The funding is not officially in the county budget,” Schoonmaker said.  “It is funded only by year-end designations that are extra sales tax dollars and surpluses from county departments.  If there are no surplus funds in a year, then no $100,000 donation.”

I remember when newly-elected Mayor Tim Burchett chafed at some commitments left from the Ragsdale administration that rolled into his term and budgets. It’s better policy just to fund stuff or not.

Sandra Clark is editor/CEO of Knox TN Today Inc.


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