Horton throws his hat into the ring

He is the second person to announce his candidacy in the upcoming mayoral race.

Sam Wall

Radford Chamber of Commerce President David Horton announced his intention to run in the upcoming mayoral election via video on Facebook early Monday afternoon.

“In the last few years, I’ve had a lot of people come up to me and ask ‘would you be willing to run for office?’,” he said in the video. “Since Mayor Bruce Brown made his announcement last Monday that he was planning to retire at the end of his term, it’s really intensified.”

In addition to working with the chamber, Horton is also the chair of the city’s Beautification and Forestry Commission. The lifelong Radford resident, who also works in the dean’s office at his alma mater Radford University, told the Radford News Journal that he is running for office because he “loves giving back to the city.”

“Radford is a great place to live and raise a family, but a lot of people don’t know that,” he said. “I don’t have all the answers, but I’ll lead the charge.”

Horton said that he would not ask the chamber to endorse him since the organization has traditionally stayed neutral during elections. He also said that he is too early in the process to think about fundraising, but hopes that his campaign is a grassroots effort with members of the community.

At press time, his announcement video had over 80 comments wishing him well or announcing support, as well as 2,500 views.

Councilman Keith Marshall, who is in his eighth year on the council, and has served as vice mayor during that time, announced his intention to run for mayor immediately following Brown’s announcement at the Jan. 8 regular meeting.

General Registrar of Elections Tracy Howard said that Marshall has filed all of the necessary paperwork, including 125 signatures from Radford’s registered voters. Horton just recently picked up the necessary forms, but said he plans to have everything turned in well ahead of the March 6 deadline.

The election itself will take place May 1. The winner takes office July 1, and serves a four-year term.

Also up for election are three school board seats (Lynn Burris, Jessie Critterton and Carl Mitchell) and two council seats (Mick Turk and Marshall’s seat.) More coverage on the upcoming election will appear in future editions.