ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - The City of Alexandria will have its first new mayor in 12 years, and its first African-American mayor in the city's history. State Rep. Jeff Hall, D, defeated Kay Michiels, D, and Catherine Davidson, D, with 53 percent of the vote, avoiding a runoff.
"They heard the message and they trusted me enough to give me the opportunity to do it," said Hall. "I am proud to be a part of it, proud to be a part of the challenge to bring the quality of life that we talked about that would make people want to stay here, make people want to live here."
Hall received 7,842 votes, Michiels finished second with 5,402 and Davidson finished last with 1,679.
It was Hall's second attempt at running for mayor. In the 2014 mayoral race, Hall finished second in a field of five with 5,106 votes compared to Roy's 7,787. Roy narrowly skirted a runoff with 51 percent of the vote. Hall then won a landslide victory in the February 2015 special election for State Representative Dist. 26 with 84 percent of the vote.
"We did what we could do not to harm or hurt anyone, but to try and do what we needed to do to try and get as many votes as we could, praise God," said Hall.
Hall's platform has focused on environmental justice, economic development, public safety and crime as well as "enhancing" utility configuration.
Current Alexandria Mayor Jacques Roy released a statement congratulating Hall. Before qualifying began, Roy was expected to run for his fourth term against Hall, but Roy later decided not to run.
"Congratulations to Representative Hall for a historic
win. In addition to the work and commitment it takes to win the office, Mr. Hall has achieved a milestone in Alexandria politics as its first African-American mayor. This has so much meaning to so many people and especially to so many children who will look at this moment and dream of their own opportunities to serve. It also stands alone as, and should be seen for just being, a big accomplishment—and one with serious consequences. We will help make it smooth and helpful, and we salute and challenge our staff to help Mr. Hall hit the ground running on day one,” said Mayor Jacques Roy.
Hall will also be working with a city council that is expected to be favorable to his agenda. Gerber Porter, D, defeated incumbent Roosevelt Johnson, D, for Alexandria City Councilman Dist. 2 with 55 percent of the vote. Johnson, a frequent supporter of Roy's is being replaced by Porter who could sway the seven-member council. Councilmen Joe Fuller, Ed Larvadain and Jules Green have been outspoken supporters of Hall.
Also in city elections, Councilman At-large Jim Villard holding on to his seat by defeating Quintle Slaughter with 58 percent of the vote.