On Friday, blogger Scott Ewart reported on his Scott E’s Blog that Independent candidate Gene Ryan has withdrawn from the Howard County Council District 3 race. Included in Scott’s post is the official announcement from the Ryan campaign regarding Gene’s withdrawal. Being in a similar life circumstance, I can appreciate the difficult decision that Gene had to make, both in entering and exiting the race. I’ve met Gene a couple of times, and feel that he a strong advocate and leader, an important voice in our community conversation. I thank Gene for his continued willingness to serve Howard County, and look forward to working with him in the future.
With Gene existing from the race, we’re back to where we were at the February filing deadline – the June 26th Democratic Primary will decide the next Howard County Councilmember from District 3. This presents a great opportunity for our Party; however, with that opportunity comes great responsibility, and we as Democrats should be mindful of that. We should remember that whoever is elected will represent all of District 3 – Democrats, Republicans and Independents. Let us go beyond the mere interest of party – and interests within the party – to send a message to Howard County that we’re the party that nominates leaders that are qualified to do exactly that – lead.
Next year, we will have, in essence, a brand new County Council, along with a new Board of Education. These twelve individuals shall take office at a critical time in Howard County’s history, and will make some of the most consequential decisions that have been made in many years, ones that will profoundly affect our County for years to come. A multitude of issues will need to be addressed, including ensuring equal opportunity for all in education, housing and employment; common-sense development that balances growth and sustainability; public safety, especially when it comes to school safety, human and drug trafficking, and our growing opioid crisis; and fiscal transparency and responsibility (noting that the Council has oversight of what is now a $1.6 billion operating budget).
This is not the time to elect individuals that have done little more than manage to find their way into putting together the “right” talking points, saying the “right” things, making the “right” political friends, or generating the most buzz on social media. Now is the time for leaders – and leadership – who are prepared to lead Howard County into the future, individuals that have proven track records of getting things done, and bringing people together to do those things.
I have that record. My decade of service to Howard County reflects that. My twenty-five years as a leader in the private sector reflect that. Experience matters, and that’s exactly what I will bring to the job – on day one – as a member of the Howard County Council.
We have four candidates running in District 3 that possess what I feel are the right values, vision and priorities – ones that are in step with our Party and Howard County. Because of this, I believe this campaign should come down to which candidate possesses the skills, abilities, and experience to serve District 3 and Howard County in the manner in which it deserves – starting on day one. Leaders that are uniquely qualified and prepared to lead our County in both meeting our challenges, and seizing the great opportunities that I still believe exist. Candidates who have the track record of bringing people together – those that can vote in the Democratic Primary on June 26th and those that cannot – to do the big things that will allow us to build upon our amazing past to create a bright future for all in Howard County.
Based on that critical standard, I believe the choice is clear.
I am that candidate.
I hope that you’ll agree, and support our campaign.
As always, please feel free to contact me with your thoughts, concerns, etc. Thanks.