Published on October 6th, 2017 |


Buckhead Coalition endorses candidates in all Atlanta City Council races

The Buckhead Coalition membership of 100 business leaders Thursday released its choices among candidates for the Atlanta City Council—including the positions of president, three At-large seats, and all 12 districts—in keeping with its history of supporting candidates for City of Atlanta executive and legislative contests.

The endorsements are Alex Wan for president of the Council; Michael Bond for Post 1 At-large; Cory Ruth Post 2 At-large; and Andre Dickens Post 3 At-large, plus for districts covering part or all of the Buckhead Community, Kirk Rich for District 6, Howard Shook District 7, and JP Matzigkeit District 8.

Remaining district seats receiving the Coalition’s support are #1 Carla Smith, #2 Amir Farokhi, #3 Ivory Young, #4 Cleta Winslow, #5 Natalyn Archibong, #9 Kwame Abernathy, #10 Kenneth Hill, #11 Marcia Overstreet, and #12 Joyce Sheperd.

The Coalition endorses with contributions to these nonpartisan races, along with the members of the Board of Education announced September 14th, and will conclude at a later date with its endorsement for Mayor.  These decisions are made by directors of the Coalition’s Better Community Political Action Committee (BC PAC).  The BC PAC doesn’t endorse in partisan races.

Of the 16 selected, half are incumbents, which was by design as explained by the Coalition’s President Sam Massell: “It’s very important to preserve the progressive government we enjoy as a result of many years of economic and social success, and to nurture diversification.”

The BC PAC gave the maximum donation allowed by law of $2,600 to each contestant, with the only exception being for Andre Dickens.  As he is running for reëlection without opposition, “he was given $1,809, equal to his qualifying fee,” Massell reported, “to demonstrate appreciation for his public service.”

This PAC exercised the same formula for funds given candidates for the Board of Education. These were Leslie Grant, Byron Amos, Lewis Cartee, Nancy Meister, Jatisha Marsh, Eshé Collins, Kandis Jackson, Cynthia Brown, and Jason Esteves.  Total funds given to-date to all candidates is $59,897.

Massell, a former mayor of Atlanta, issued a strong plea for attention to these races, stating “the legislative arenas of government are integral partners with our executive branches which is why we separate our endorsements,” he said.

“Having served as president of Atlanta’s City Council (then called the Board of Aldermen) for eight years, I can recite many instances where the Council made the decisions that aided in smooth management of the City,” Massell stated. “Thus, it behooves us all to become informed and get involved in all such contests.”

–John Schaffner


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