Toby Barker serves as state representative for House District 102. District 102 encompasses Central Hattiesburg, including both Forrest and Lamar counties. He was the first Millennial elected to the Mississippi Legislature.
Toby serves as Chairman of the House Performance Based Budgeting Committee. His other committee memberships include the Appropriations, Apportionment & Elections, Education, Medicaid, Public Health & Human Services and Technology committees.
He was elected in 2007 to replace retiring District 102 Representative Lee Jarrell Davis. At age 25, he was the youngest legislator elected in Mississippi and the first elected in his generation. Now at 35, while he still may be one of the youngest, his stock in the Mississippi House is rising quickly. He was appointed Vice Chairman of Universities & Colleges in his second year in office and was handling complex public health legislation in committee and on the floor by his third year.
Before being elected to the House, Toby served as director of the Southern Miss Business Assistance Center. Now with entrepreneurship services expanded into the Accelerator at The Garden, he launched Hattiesburg's first business incubator in 2006.
Toby moved to Hattiesburg in 2000 to attend The University of Southern Mississippi, earning a B.A. in communications in 2004 and an M.S. in economic development in 2006. While at Southern Miss, he was heavily involved in the Student Government Association, being elected student body vice president as a freshman. He was also active in his fraternity, Pi Kappa Phi, as well as the Baptist Student Union and Men of Excellence. He served over two months as a summer missionary in Burkina Faso, West Africa and completed several short-term mission projects in Juarez, Mexico, New England, New Orleans and the Pacific Northwest. These mission trips led him into his field of economic development.
Originally from Meridian, Toby Barker is the son of Rev. and Mrs. Bob Barker, Jr. of Meridian. He is the grandson of the late Dr. and Mrs. Bob Barker, Sr. of Chickasaw, Alabama and the late Mr. and Mrs. E.D. (Red) McKinney of Meridian. His hero is his grandfather, Red McKinney, a former shipping manager for A.J. Lyon Grocery, World War II veteran and jazz piano player.
In 2015, he earned his Masters of Healthcare Leadership at Brown University.
In his "real life," Toby lives in the historic Parkhaven neighborhood. He now works as an account executive with his family-owned Barker Advertising. He is a Rotarian with the Rotary Club of Hattiesburg-Sunrise and is also a Paul Harris Fellow. He also serves on the Hattiesburg Public School District Foundation Board and co-founded the Avenues Alliance.
Toby married the former Kate Northrop of Quitman in 2008. They are currently raising their daughter, Audra. They attend the Ekklesia Church in Hattiesburg.