The Auburn Municipal Election is Tuesday, Aug. 28.
All eight City Council positions and the mayorship are up for election.
With only three incumbents running for re-election and Auburn’s 20-year mayor choosing to not run again, there will be new leadership in Auburn.
Meet the City Council candidates for Ward 4.
Candidates are sorted by the first letter of their last name. Incumbents are denoted with an (I) beside their name.
Answers were not edited for length or content.
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1. Why did I decide to run for City Council?
Each Ward in Auburn should have a common-sense voice in Auburn City government. For a few years, I’ve been an elected leader in my Auburn Ward 4 neighborhood, serving as a homeowner’s association president. This has given me opportunities to attend Auburn Council meetings and learn about the importance of neighborhood voices in City government. As an 18-year resident of Auburn Ward 4, I have the local knowledge, leadership experience, and community support necessary to serve as an effective Council member. Auburn University, especially the College of Liberal Arts, has a strong commitment to Civic Engagement. My local campaign and Council service (if I’m elected) are real-life examples of civic engagement at the municipal level. I hope to inspire AU students to take similar opportunities and use their talents and energy to serve others as civic leaders in their home towns.
2. What experience do I have that will help if I’m elected to the City Council?
One of the major challenges for City Council in years ahead will be budgeting and planning for new primary and secondary public schools in Auburn. As a senior English professor with nearly 30 years of experience in teaching, research, and institutional governance, I’m well prepared to make leadership contributions that will support Auburn public schools. In addition, the best experience for serving in local government is to understand well the local situation. It is important to listen to the concerns of ordinary Auburn residents, including AU students. As I’ve prepared for Election Day this very hot summer, I have personally walked every single street in Ward 4, talking with registered voters (and their many wonderful dogs!). My service on City Council will be built on this foundation of knowing the concerns and hopes of our Ward 4 residents in terms of public safety, city services, public schools, and business success.
3. What is the most important issue facing my ward?
Like all Auburn residents, Ward 4 neighbors need to have a voice in Auburn’s dramatic growth challenges. We want to continue city growth responsibly as a 21st century city. We want to be high-tech, prosperous, safe, well-educated, diverse, environmentally conscious, and fun. Everyone in Alabama knows that Auburn is special and has special advantages, economically and educationally. Everyone in Auburn feels the love for our unique community and its impressive university. But by growing responsibly, we can go much further, becoming a model small city, not only for Alabama but for the Southeast Region and the United States. On a more local scale, Ward 4 (which includes many AU student residents) is urgently in need of improved sidewalks, bike lanes, and recreational/green spaces.
1. Why did you decide to run for City Council?
I am a father, husband & small business owner (Huff Smith Law). As a father I care about the success of our school system and safety in our neighborhoods. As a small business owner, I care about the success of our business and nonprofit community. As a citizen, I care that our city council listens to each and everyone of our needs and concerns. My family and I are heavily vested in Auburn, from education, safety, to parks and recreation. Almost every decision made on city council will have an effect on us. I do not want to sit on the sidelines as we move to the future. I want to do good for Auburn and inspire our neighbors to do good for themselves and each other. Auburn has challenges ahead, but we will work together to make the future bright!
2. What experience do you have that you think would help you if elected to the City Council?
As an attorney, my commitment to zealously advocate for my clients, listen to their needs, communicate openly & problem-solve. As a board member (Auburn Greenspace Advisory Board, United Way of Lee County & Auburn Young Professionals), the ability to work in tandem with community stakeholders to accomplish goals, to analyze critically & to motivate for action. As an instructor (Political Science), the ability to educate and inspire. As a father, empathy, love & support.
3. What is the most important issue facing your ward that you would like to address if you are elected?
As city council for Ward 4 my overall goal is to open up lines of communication with my neighbors in the Ward and in Auburn as a whole. In addition to the bi-weekly city council meetings, I will schedule monthly Ward 4 meetings. I also set up a Facebook page, “Ward 4 -Auburn – Public Forum” as means to encourage dialogue and fellowship between neighbors in Ward 4. I am always accessible through my personal cell phone number (334) 740-8847 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org. I will always be accessible to answer questions or assist.
The Plainsman did not receive responses from Barry Davis.
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