Bettering Plainfield with the facts since 2005

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Ashley Davis kicks off First Ward Dem race Monday

First Ward Democratic candidate Ashley Davis
with Councilor Rebecca Williams...

... and Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman
at the 2018 "Ready To Run" conference at Rutgers.


Ashley Davis, the Democratic Party's choice for the First Ward Council seat will kick off her primary campaign Monday, April 16, with a rally at Plainfield Democratic Headquarters. The event gets under way at 7:00 PM and everyone is cordially invited. Light refreshments will be served. Be sure to check out her campaign Facebook page here.

A Plainfield native (Evergreen School, under Mrs. Doris Williams) and Rutgers graduate with a master's degree in management, Davis has already racked up considerable experience in retail politics working on Democratic campaigns in other states.

Ashley works for the City in the Division of Parks and Recreation, where she is preparing for her second season of coordinating the city's summer feeding program, which guarantees those who receive school lunches during the school year of regular daily meals over the summer.

Taking nothing for granted, she took part in last month's annual "Ready to Run" workshops at Rutgers, sponsored by the school's Center for American Women and Politics.

Part boot camp and part educational experience, the participants included women from all political parties interested in running for public office -- including school boards and municipal governing bodies.

Plainfield was well represented at this year's event, thanks to scholarship aid provided by Sen. Nick Scutari. In addition to Davis, other Plainfield attendees included Gail Smith Alexander and perennial opposition candidate Alma Blanco.

Our own Councilor Rebecca Williams was a presenter at the conference, which energized Davis and others to pursue elected office this year. Among other things, Ashley got to spend some quality time with our own Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman.

Davis' nomination came about in a rather unusual way.

While in previous years Plainfield Democratic Chairman Adrian O. Mapp had used a screening committee to make a recommendation to the Plainfield Democratic City Committee (PDCC) from among interested potential candidates, Chairman Mapp did not choose to go this route for 2018.

Instead, he invited the two persons who had spoken to him of their interest in the First Ward seat -- Davis and Gail Smith Alexander -- to speak to a late February PDCC meeting (see my post here). Both gave brief presentations on their background and reasons for wanting to serve.

After the presentations, Chairman Mapp opened the floor to nominations and both were nominated. He then called for a vote by raised hands, in which Davis received 23 votes to Smith Alexander's 17, whereupon the Chairman declared her the Plainfield Democratic nominee for the First Ward seat.

Davis faces competition from incumbent Diane Toliver, who chose not to come before the Plainfield Democratic City Committee. Democratic voters will decide in the June Primary on the candidate for the November general election. If elected in November, Davis will resign her city job on being sworn in as Councilor.

Incumbent Wards 2/3 Councilor Joylette Mills-Ransome -- who was elected last November to serve the balance of Rebecca Williams term when she was elected as citywide at-large -- is also on the June Primary ballot for a full term of her own. Her opponent is school board member Cameron Cox, who word has it is being backed by the Campbell forces.

Plainfield Democratic Headquarters is at 35 Watchung Avenue (next to Antojito's restaurant). Parking is available on the street and in the lot adjacent to the building.

  -- Dan Damon [follow]

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