DOTHAN, AL (WSFA) - The race for governor is still over a year away but potential candidates are working hard to get their message out there.
Democratic hopefuls Ron Sparks and Artur Davis were in Dothan Monday for the Chamber of Commerce's candidate forum.
Both men told the hundred plus members of the chamber this area is prime for growth.
"I'm glad to be here today we're going to be spending a lot of time here in the wiregrass to make a case to the voters in the wiregrass," says Artur Davis.
"I think people are looking for a governor that can talk straight and tell them exactly where he is going and what he is going to do," said Ron Sparks.
With a number of issues plaguing the state both men are stressing the importance of education.
"I think we have a great educational system but there is always room for improvement and that's what I hope to bring to the table," added Sparks.
"We have got to strengthen the quality of our schools so that we can compete for and can do the jobs that our here in our state," explained Davis.
And as the country is dealing with a recession and economic uncertainty job creation and industry is another hot topic.
"The biggest challenge for the state is going to be the economy there is no doubt about it our budget is broke and we have got to do everything we can to turn that around," says Sparks.
"The next governor has got to figure out how do we expand our job base, how do we diversify our job base so we have a fighting chance to make our way back to the low unemployment just a short time ago," says Davis.
The Dothan Chamber is planning another forum in the fall this time for the republican candidates.