By Colin Hogan
Ron Woodward Sr. announced this week that he will be seeking another term as Fulton’s mayor this fall.
The Republican incumbent is currently on the tail end of his second consecutive term as the city’s mayor. If re-elected, he would enter his fourth overall mayoral term. In all, his history as a Fulton public servant includes 14 years as a city councilor, 10 years as mayor and four years as the mayor’s executive assistant.
Woodward first served on the Common Council from 1982 until 1986, at which point he began his first term as mayor. After serving what at that time was a two-year term, Woodward then took a hiatus from the city government in the late ’80s while he battled cancer. In 1994, he was again elected to the council, on which he served consecutive terms from 1995 to 2004. From 2004 to 2008, Woodward served as then-Fulton Mayor Daryl Hayden’s executive assistant. He then assumed the mayoral office again in 2008, serving what are now four-year terms. After winning re-election in 2011, he is now serving what will have been his second consecutive, and third overall, term as mayor.
Woodward said Wednesday that he’s proud of his record as a public servant in Fulton and he’s willing to take on any opponents who emerge.
“The city has certainly had some hard times, and we’ve always done the best we could,” Woodward said. “If there’s someone else out there who the public thinks can do a better job and they beat me, so be it.”
Members of the Fulton Republican Committee — which has been advertising for potential candidates for mayor, the Common Council and Fulton’s county legislature seats — met with Woodward Saturday morning. According to Woodward, the subcommittee offered him financial support and help with circulating petitions, but did not specify whether they will continue to search for other possible mayoral candidates.
FRC Chairman Marc Holliday said Wednesday the committee would still like to hear from any Republicans interested in running for mayor, but that he, personally, wouldn’t be opposed to endorsing Woodward. He said the committee is just trying to get more people participating in the process.
“It’s nothing against Ron. I like Ron. I think he’s done a lot of good things, given the state the city is currently in,” said Holliday. “We just want to get more people involved. The more choice, the better. Getting some new blood in there is always a good thing.”
As of Wednesday, Woodward was the only mayoral candidate the subcommittee had interviewed. Holliday said after meeting with the subcommittee, all candidates then have to meet with the full Republican committee before any endorsements are made. He estimated that endorsements would be announced by early June.
Woodward noted that the FRC’s four-person subcommittee consists of Holliday and Mark Sherman — each of whom ran against Woodward in the 2007 election — along with Holliday’s wife and his son. He said he plans to run regardless of whether he ends up receiving the Republican committee’s support.
“I’m not asking their permission to run,” Woodward said. “I’ll be running with or without their support.”
By Colin Hogan