Beth Harwell tells former Tennessee Republican Party chairwoman she's running for 2018 gubernatorial bid

House Speaker Beth Harwell, R-Nashville, speaks during a news conference at the state Capitol in Nashville, Tenn., on Thursday, June 30, 2016, about a health coverage task force's proposals for Medicaid expansion in Tennessee. From right behind her are Republican Reps. Steve McManus of Memphis and Roger Kane of Knoxville. (AP Photo/Erik Schelzig)

NASHVILLE - For well over a year, Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell has held her cards close over whether she will seek the 2018 GOP nomination for governor.

But the soft-spoken Nashville representative appears to have exposed her hand to former Tennessee Republican Party chairwoman Susan Richardson Williams, who dished Friday in a Facebook post.

"Just got a call from Speaker Beth Harwell to let me know she is running for Governor next year too!" wrote Williams. "Let the games begin! Wow!"

Asked to elaborate, Williams said in an email she had "nothing more than [Harwell's] call to let me know she was running" to share. "I congratulated her and said I was happy that we may have at least two women in the race.