January 12, 2021 10:07:58 AM
WEST POINT -- A second candidate has qualified to run in the Democratic primary for mayor.
Cole Bryan, 36, filed qualifying paperwork Monday morning, joining State Farm agent and former Ward 1 selectman Rod Bobo in the race.
A West Point native and Hebron Christian graduate, Bryan works with The Mission Ministry -- started by his grandfather, R.C. (Dickie) Bryan -- and he founded Lighthouse Recovery, according to a formal announcement he emailed to The Dispatch. Both missions, located on Church Hill Road, aim to help people struggling with addiction.
Bryan attended Mississippi State University before moving to New York. He and his wife, Neely, -- who directs West Point-Clay County Animal Shelter -- returned to West Point in 2017.
"While I have no political experience, I know how to work hard, and I know how to ask questions. I also have a love of West Point, am committed to my fellow man and our community and have a deep desire to revitalize our city," Bryan said in his announcement.
If elected, he said he would work with other local elected officials and the Golden Triangle Development LINK to improve quality of life for city residents.
"West Point has a long history of good leadership, and I believe I have the ability and passion to continue the pattern of making West Point a good, wholesome place to work and raise a family," Bryan said. "No doubt, there are many challenges. We do not have the population base and the tax base of the past. So, we must work and learn to be more efficient while making efforts to replace jobs and opportunities that have been lost.
"... Even though we do not have the resources that we once had, by managing efficiently we can provide the services that all of us want and deserve," he added.
As of Monday, the mayor's race was the only competitive city race in West Point. All five incumbent selectmen have qualified and are so far unopposed.
The qualifying deadline is Feb. 5. Party primaries are April 6, and the general election, if necessary, is set for June 8.
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