BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — On Monday, Jefferson County Commissioner Lashunda Scales announced her run in the race for the next mayor of Birmingham.
Scales, who was elected to the District 1 seat of the commission in 2018 and was unanimously voted as president pro-tem shortly thereafter, made her announcement Monday morning at Vulcan Park. Prior to being elected to the commission, Scales served on the Birmingham City Council between 2009 and 2018. She has lived in Birmingham for 25 years.
“Together, we’re going to be the change that we both want to see,” Scales said.
Incumbent mayor Randall Woodfin, who is currently seeking a second term, has served as mayor since 2017.
Birmingham businessman Chris Woods, a former Auburn University football player who later joined the NFL, announced his entry into the race last week. He’s running on a platform of improving education, reducing crime, and revitalizing neighborhoods. This marks Woods’s third bid for mayor. More than two decades before attempting to unseat Mayor William Bell in 2017, Woods took on Mayor Richard Arrington.
If elected, Scales would be the first woman elected as mayor of the city. However, she would not be the first woman to serve in that role. After the removal of former mayor Larry Langford—following his conviction on a number of corruption charges—Judge Carole Smitherman, then-president of the Birmingham City Council, served as mayor of Birmingham from October 2009 until Mayor William Bell’s election the following month.
A website detailing Scales’ platform and plans as mayor has been launched and can be found here.
The deadline for qualifying for the race is July 10. The election will be held Aug. 24.
Corrections: A previous version of this story inaccurately stated that Smitherman lost her seat on the council. This story has also been updated to remove a sentence in which Scales was described as “the first major candidate” to declare her candidacy for mayor.