30 candidates join race for Mableton’s mayor and council elections

Credit: Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@

Credit: Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@

Special Election Day is March 21

Voters in the new city of Mableton will elect their first mayor and council this March, and a whopping 30 people added their names to the ballot last week.

The city will elect council members from six districts and one mayor, elected at large. The city’s first officials will establish a plan for the city, determine which services to provide and create a city budget, and they can also appoint a city manager, clerk, attorney, and municipal court and judge.

A detailed, interactive map of the city, its district boundaries and neighborhoods can be found on the Cobb County website at cobbcounty.org/mableton. Information about the candidates is from the county website and is publicly available.

Candidates for mayor include Aaron Carman, an IT sales manager; Charles Ford, an attorney and public defender; LaTonia Long, a public policy manager; Michael Murphy, a business owner; Henry Okafor, a boxing coach and reverend; and Michael Owens, a cyber security executive.

Credit: Cobb County

Credit: Cobb County

The nonpartisan council members will serve staggered terms for the first election: half will serve a two-year term, and the other half a four-year term. Subsequent council members will serve full four-year terms.

Ron Davis, a semi-retired consultant, and DeBorah Johnson, who works in finance, are the candidates for District 1. The district includes the southernmost corner of Cobb County and Six Flags Over Georgia and runs up the left county border to Old Alabama Road.

The borders of District 2 include I-20 to the south, the Chattahoochee River to the east and Mableton Parkway to the north, and there are three candidates: Monica DeLancy, an educator and nonprofit executive; Dami Oladapo, an IT operations manager; and Kisha Scott, a merchant marketer.

District 3, in the middle of the city including most of the area just south of Veterans Memorial Highway, has five candidates: Victor Arnold, a personal trainer; Keisha Jeffcoat, a senior project manager; Barry Tyler Krebs, who works in sales; Yashica Marshall, an attorney; and William Wilson, a consultant.

Eight candidates have qualified in District 4, the northeastern part of the city from Veterans Memorial up to the city of Smyrna — Jennifer Anthony, an educator; Patricia Auch, an analytical chemist; Cassandra Brown, who works in IT sales; Heidi Dasinger, a business development manager; Robert Graham, a paramedic; Shanequa Moore, a nonprofit CEO; Brian Patrick, a business owner; and Rob Pendleton, an associate casting director.

District 5 includes the area west of Floyd Road down to Old Alabama Road. Four candidates have qualified, including Cheryl Davis, who works for the state of Georgia; Chijioke Ebbis, an affordable housing regional asset manager; TJ Ferguson, an IT sales architect; and Stephanie Loose, a certified public accountant.

Ricky Dickens, who works in business, and Debora Herndon, a legal practice specialist, are the candidates in District 6, the northwesternmost point of the city encompassing the East-West Connector and up to Hurt Road.

Voters approved forming the city of Mableton during the November 2022 election, 53% to 47%. Proposed services include parks and recreation, sanitation, planning and zoning and code enforcement, but the city’s elected officials will determine which services to provide. Proponents of the city advocated for local control to improve and redevelop the area.

Arguably the most pressing challenge currently facing the city and its soon-to-be elected officials is the issue of de-annexation. Some residents have been pushing to leave the city’s boundaries since the day after the November election, and hundreds attended a town hall last week to support and learn more about exiting the city.