As I walked back inside the Blue Goat on Tuesday night, a bizarre reality sunk in. I had just hung up with my opponent Harry Warner as he conceded the race. My response to his call was honest and true, “We all won tonight Harry. We ran a race that focused on the issues, our experience, and our vision for the district and our city. We focused on civility over character attacks, and in that, we all won tonight.” I feel that in many races across the city, that was the result. No matter the outcome, we made improving Richmond our focus and let the voters decide who was best to drive that forward. The true intent of politics is to focus on building trust, emphasizing civility, and being respectful. I applaud Harry Warner and Jonathon Cruise for embodying those values throughout our campaign and we saw all of Richmond embrace that Tuesday.

By a narrow margin, I have become First District City Council-elect.

As the door closed behind me, the music turned down, the crowd became silent and turned towards me eagerly awaiting the announcement. I took a second to fully embrace the moment. Surrounding me were friends and family. Everyone was proud to be part of this moment, to be a supporter of this campaign, to be a voice for the bright future of Richmond. While I know it is my name that was on the ballot, WE won. I wouldn’t have been here without their support, their motivation, their volunteering, their encouragement, their drive. The joy of the moment was our’s.

As I reflect on the reality of the result and the four months of exhausting hard work that went into this campaign, I am humbled to have won, but also honored by the nature and focus of the campaign. To be able to focus on our message and priorities, with only the differences being in our approaches and experience, was respectful and civil. We left personal attacks on the sideline and focused on the job at hand. While the Mayor race had its own distraction, the First District was able to focus on making City Hall work, improving our schools, and creating accountable budget and finance. We made doing the job of City Council representative for the First District our goal, not in attacking each other. I look forward to working with Harry Warner in addressing the needs of the First District and collaborating with Jonathan Cruise in driving government transparency efforts.

Let us all continue our civil pursuit of government and politics. Being friends and neighbors first and to let our differences be decided by the voters. The future is bright for RVA.

Thank you for your support. I truly could not have done this without you.

Recovering bureaucrat. Pioneered as Civic Innovator. Now serving a second term on City Council in Richmond, VA. Words are my own.

Recovering bureaucrat. Pioneered as Civic Innovator. Now serving a second term on City Council in Richmond, VA. Words are my own.