Lifelong Walker resident Eric Cook will serve the rest of Tracy Girlinghouse’s term on the Walker City Council after Girlinghouse took office as a member of the Livingston Parish Council.

The City Council appointed Cook during its Jan. 11 meeting, just hours after Girlinghouse took the oath of office for his parish seat.

Girlinghouse made the nomination, saying he had known Cook since the two were young.

“I’ve known him pretty much my entire life,” Girlinghouse said. “He was a classmate. He’s a Christian man. He’s a good man. He’s involved with the community. … I have known him, what kind of man he is, and I think he would be an asset to this council.”

Cook, 46, is married to Lydia Cook and has three sons.

A 16-year veteran of The Advocate’s press room, Cook said his appointment to the council will be his first time holding public office.

“I love the city of Walker and love the people, so I’m looking forward to working with each of you and helping make the decisions to help make Walker a better place,” Cook said in accepting the nomination.

The vote was 4-1, with Councilman Jonathan Davis voting against Cook’s appointment. Davis declined to comment on his vote after the meeting.

An inauguration ceremony will be held during the council’s next meeting, Mayor Rick Ramsey said.

The council term expires Dec. 31. Elections for the next term will be held Nov. 8.

Girlinghouse said he enjoyed his time on the City Council.

“I’ve learned a tremendous amount about how things work in government,” Girlinghouse said. “The mayor has been an absolute teacher, a mentor, and I’ve learned so much for all of y’all.”

Girlinghouse described his leaving the council as “bittersweet,” adding, “I am a little sad about leaving the city, but when I decided to run for the Parish Council, I said if I win, that’s where God wants me to be, so that’s where I’m going to go.”

Follow Heidi R. Kinchen on Twitter, @HeidiRKinchen, and call her at (225) 336-6981.