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Posted on: April 29, 2021

Kenton County Fiscal Court Recognizes 2020 Pioneer Award Honoree Arnold Simpson

Arnold Simpson

At its Fiscal Court meeting this week, Kenton County recognized 2020 Pioneer Award honoree Arnold Simpson for his outstanding career of public service.

Arnold Simpson was born April 26, 1952, the son of James and Zona Pennington Simpson. Mr. Simpson graduated from Kentucky State University in 1974, and the University of Kentucky College of Law in 1977. He married Jo Ann Hill on October 10, 1981.  He is a lifelong resident of Covington and a graduate of Holmes High School.

Arnold Simpson and Kenton County Fiscal Court members pose for a photo.

In 1986, Arnold Simpson became the first African-American City Manager of Covington. He then became the first African-American to represent Northern Kentucky in the Kentucky House of Representatives in 1994. He served as a member of the Kentucky House of Representatives for 24 years, representing parts or all of the cities of Covington, Ludlow, and Park Hills.

In addition to an accomplished legislative career, Mr. Simpson served as a board member for numerous organizations in Kenton County and Northern Kentucky.   

The Kenton County Pioneer Award honors living residents of Kenton County who have a record of outstanding service to the community and exemplify the highest standards of personal integrity.  The Pioneer Award honors those who demonstrate servant leadership combined with awareness of the needs of fellow residents.

A committee, composed of the members of the Kenton County Ethics Commission, reviewed the nominations, identified five deserving individuals, and forwarded their names to the Kenton County Fiscal Court for consideration and approval. 

The 2020 Pioneer Award recipients are Bill Goetz, Burr Travis, William Funke, Garren Colvin and Arnold Simpson. 

Past Pioneer Award recipients include Ralph Drees, Mer Grayson, Robert Hoffer, Kim Kitchen, Parker William, Ed Schroeder, Jim Claypool, Mary Hulefeld, Rick Hulefeld, and John Salyers. 

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