Another Chattanooga resident has thrown his hat into the ring as a candidate for next year's City Council elections.
Ken Smith, who works as chief information officer for The Johnson Group, announced Sunday he will challenge City Council Chair Pam Ladd next March. Although attempts by Nooga.com to reach Smith Monday were unsuccessful, the candidate said in a news release he was running with a desire to manage growth and development taking place in District 3 and to help foster "strong and vibrant" neighborhoods.
The district covers areas in Hixson, Dupont, and neighborhoods and businesses located along Highway 58.
Despite having never held public office, Smith has experience in politics, serving as e-campaign adviser for both the Fred Thompson presidential campaign and the campaign to elect Gov. Bobby Jindal in Louisiana. The candidate is also on the board of Re:Start, the Center for Adult Education.
Smith said that if elected, he hoped to offer an ear to taxpayers and bring a new perspective to a council that has made recent decisions in a vacuous environment.
"On far too many issues, the City Council has made decisions inside a vacuum without listening to the concerns of local taxpayers. The status quo cannot continue if we truly want to bring positive change to our community and make District 3 a better place to work, live and play," Smith said in a prepared statement.
Smith's entrance into next year's race brings the total number of new candidates to have confirmed bids to six. Chris Anderson, Moses Freeman, Larry Grohn, Ryan King and Tom Tomisek are also running.
The election is in March.