Mayoral candidates' platforms include more equity, mental health services, safe neighborhoods

George Copeland Jr. | 4/4/2024, 6 p.m.
The list of candidates who hope to become Richmond’s next mayor continues to grow.

The list of candidates who hope to become Richmond’s next mayor continues to grow. The city’s general elections for mayor and city council is Nov. 5. The filing deadline for this election is June 18.

So far, candidates who hope voters will choose them in November include:

1st District City Council Representative Andreas D. Addison, who has served in the role since 2017. Mr. Addison, the owner of Pure Fitness in Scott’s Addition, has focused his campaign on improving the quality of life in the city through a lens of racial and economic justice. His platform includes refocusing neighborhoods toward safety, multiple modes of transit and small businesses, addressing life expectancies for Black, Brown and low-income residents, and ensuring quality healthcare, education and more. His website address is www.addisonforcouncil.com.

Michelle Mosby brings a similar experience to the field, having served in 2015 as the first Black woman president of the City Council, representing the 9th District until an unsuccessful mayoral campaign in 2016.

Ms. Mosby also serves as the founder of the Help Me Help You Foundation, which assists the formerly incarcerated in re-entering society. Her major priorities include improved public safety through police officer recruitment and community policing, teams focused on affordable housing and mental health crises, and expanding opportunities for businesses. Her website is www.mosbyrva.com.

Consultant and candidate Garrett Sawyer previously ran to become the City Council Representative for Richmond’s 5th District

in 2016, and has been a leader with the Richmond Public Library and the Richmond NAACP.

He has made affordable housing, mental health and community safety, and the modernization of Richmond’s online systems and services key pillars of his campaign. His website is www.garrettsawyerforrichmond.com.

Maurice Neblett, a political newcomer, is running for office for the first time with this election. A Virginia Union University graduate, security professional and community organizer, Mr. Neblett has centered his candidacy around financial accountability and transparency, improvement in education opportunities, and a holistic approach to violence reduction that includes accountability and independent oversight for law enforcement. His website is www.mauriceneblett.com.

Harrison Roday is also running for office for the first time, after years as the founder of a software company and the nonprofit Bridging Virginia, which provides loans to small business owners of color, and working to help the Democratic Party earn seats in the Virginia General Assembly and Congress.

Issues Mr. Roday plans to focus on if elected, as detailed in media interviews, range from improving City Hall management and its systemic operations, to increasing the city’s supply of housing units and better teacher attraction and retention for Richmond Public Schools. His website is www.rodayforrichmond.com.

Bridgette Whitaker has worked for years as a housing advocate bringing her concerns to Richmond City Hall and working on the street with Blessing Warriors RVA, an outreach group addressing and aiding those in the city affected by homelessness.

In addition to these candidates seeking the Mayor’s office, other Richmond-based politicians have begun their campaign process ahead of Election Day, with Sen. Tim Kaine kicking off his official campaign for a third term in the U.S. Senate on Tuesday.

And on March 18, U.S. Rep. Jennifer McClellan (D-04) filed paperwork with the Chair of the Fourth Congressional District to run for re-election.

March 18 marked the first day of filing eligibility. Congressional candidates are required to submit 1,000 signatures of district residents. Rep. McClellan’s campaign filed 3,541 petitions, more than triple the required amount.

“I’m deeply honored by the strong support from the residents of Virginia’s 4th Congressional District,” Rep. McClellan said.

“I’m proud to run for re-election to continue working to create jobs, lower costs, increase access to affordable health care, prevent gun violence, and protect voting rights, civil right and reproductive freedom."