Mike Releases Statement on Primary Victory

We did it! In the Democratic primary on Tuesday night for Charlottesville’s City Council, I received 1,855 votes for one of three Democratic slots for the general election this November. That was the second-highest vote total and the result of personally reaching out to over 2,000 voters through countless hours knocking on doors and making phone calls. But the victory also depended on the work of an extraordinary team that came together around our message of “One Charlottesville.” I have many people to thank.

I first thank the other candidates. I’m looking forward to working alongside my fellow nominees Kathy Galvin and Wes Bellamy, and I honor the service and dedication of Dede Smith and Lena Seville.

I’m grateful to my amazing wife, Emily Blout, for her incredible vision and support throughout the whole campaign.

I want to thank Maggie Thornton, my extraordinary campaign manager, who put together a smart and aggressive campaign plan and stuck to it; former Mayor Tom Vandever, the chair of the campaign, for his wisdom and savvy in guiding a campaign from scratch; former Vice Mayor Kay Slaughter and former School Board Chair Juandiego Wade, the campaign's vice-chairs, for their loyalty and leadership in crucial areas from the environment to education; Susan Payne, our communications director, for her skill in crafting and sharing our message; Heather Danforth Hill, our field director, for incredible work in keeping us at the doors and on the phones; David Jonas, our policy director, for helping craft and guide substantive and innovative policy ideas; Ashleigh Crocker, our treasurer, for helping us put together a well-financed campaign with the largest number of Charlottesville donors; Todd Free, our webmaster, for a phenomenal, vibrant website; Lionèl Dripps and the Pivot Group, who designed smart and effective direct mail; Forrest and Zaynah Pando of Pando Creative for a great TV ad; and key volunteers Wendy Brown for her guidance on business issues; Charlie Gilliam for his deft touch with voters, and Richard Imlay for cheerfully spending hundreds of hours with me canvassing.

I also thank the over 100 donors who invested in me and the campaign; the dozens of friends (both new and old) who held neighborhood house parties for the campaign; and the hundreds of people who welcomed me into their homes during four months of being interrupted during their dinners or football games. As a new member of City Council, I’m going to work very hard to serve you and to work together on the ongoing project of One Charlottesville.

Kathy, Wes, and I will soon be putting together a coordinated campaign, but if you have suggestions for me, don’t ever hesitate to contact me at mike@mikesigner.com.

Thank you again!

Mike