Collins sworn in as newest senator

By Bobby Harrison/NEMS Daily Journal

JACKSON – Nancy Adams Collins of Tupelo, using her grandfather’s Bible, took her oath of office Friday morning as the newest member of the Mississippi Senate.
Collins, who won a six-candidate special election Tuesday to fill the vacant District 6 seat, was sworn in at the beginning of the Senate session by Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant.
Her husband, Jim Collins, held the Bible, which belonged to her grandfather, Arden Adams. He taught school for 52 years in Tishomingo County.
“She especially thought it was important and wanted people to know she was putting her hand on a Bible that belonged to a teacher,” said Collins’ sister, Kathy Cooke of Iuka.
“She wanted them (teachers) to know of her support.”
The Bible later belonged to Collins’ father, Roy Adams, who served as Northern District highway commissioner.
Collins replaces Alan Nunnelee, who was elected to the U.S. Congress in November. District 6 consists of much of Lee County and a small portion of Pontotoc County.
Speaking from the Senate podium, she described the day “as a sober, sacred occasion” for her and her family and friends, many of whom attended the swearing-in ceremony.
“I believe the next four years will chart the course for the next generation of Mississippians,” she said. “I want to act today to preserve tomorrow.”
Bryant described Collins as “a tireless advocate for those in need.”
Before the swearing in, Bryant recounted her many civic activities, including her work to develop Sanctuary Hospice House in Lee County.
“She leaps over tall buildings,” he said.
Bryant also announced Collins’ committee assignments. She will serve on Appropriations; Business and Financial Institutions; Environmental Protection; Ethics; Fees, Salaries and Administration; Judiciary B and Universities and Colleges.
Collins, who has said she will run for re-election later this year as a Republican, said members should not be separated by right or the left. “I realize we go up or down together. I choose to go up together.”
Collins, a registered nurse and speech therapist, becomes the fifth woman in the current 52-member Senate.

Contact Bobby Harrison at (601) 353-3119 or bobby.harrison@journalinc.com.