50 candidates qualify to run in Selma election

Published 3:10 pm Wednesday, July 22, 2020

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Selma voters will have a large slate of candidates to choose from when they head to the polls in August – at the close of the qualifying  period, which ended Tuesday, 50 candidates had qualified to run for mayor, as well as various seats on the Selma City Council and Selma City School Board.

A dozen candidates have qualified to run for mayor, including current Ward 3 Selma City Councilwoman Miah Jackson, former Selma Mayor James Perkins Jr., attorney Yusuf Salaam and former Selma Police Department (SPD) Chief Robert Green.

Also running are businessman Havard Spencer, Trmayne Gorden, John Willoughby, Turkesa Sullivan, Clyde Richardson, Renarda White, Randy Williams and Cleophus Mann.

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Current Selma Mayor Darrio Melton recently announced that he would not be running for reelection in August.

The race for president of the Selma City Council has five contenders, including current Selma City Council President Corey Bowie who will go up against Rev. Wil Jackson, Lydia Chatmon of Selma AIR, 100 Black Men of Selma President Billy Young and Kimesha Alvarado.

Current Ward 1 Selma City Councilman Carl Bowline is not seeking reelection and three candidates have stepped up to vie for his seat – Pine Belt Communications’ Troy Harvil, Rev. Michial Lewis and Gabriel Brown.

Likewise, current Ward 2 Selma City Councilwoman Susan Youngblood will not be running for reelection and three contenders have stepped up to run for the seat – Landon Nichols, Danyell Parker and Christie Thomas.

The Ward 3 seat is being vacated by Jackson due to her run for mayor and four candidates are eying the empty seat – Blackbelt Benefit Group (BBG) Co-Founder Clay Carmichael, Brown Chapel Pastor Leodis Strong, Stephen Brooks and Mead Walker.

In Ward 4, Selma City Councilwoman Angela Benjamin will not seek reelection and three candidates will battle for her seat – Selma educator Lesia James, Javares Whitely and Glenys Dukes.

Ward 5 Selma City Councilman Sam Randolph will go up against Nadine Sturdivant in his reelection bid while Ward 6 Selma City Councilman John Leashore will face four opponents in his reelection bid – Rev. Bill Tucker, Robert Walker, local educator Jasmine Pritchett and Atkin Jemison.

The Ward 7 race will be between current Selma City Councilwoman Jannie Thomas and Hatwatha McGhee, while the Ward 8 contest will feature current Selma City Councilman Michael Johnson, security guard Charles Burgess and Tyrone Hatcher.

In the Selma City School Board race, current Board President Johnny Moss III will go up against Jeffery Strong in his bid for reelection, while Danielle Wooten and Brenda Obomanu will run unopposed for their District 1 and 2 seats, respectively.

The District 3 contest for the school board will feature Wanda Tyler and Phyllis Houser, while the District 4 race, while Dr. Tanya Miles and Lydia Pettway will go head-to-head in the District 4 contest.