A.K. Hasan, who was drawn out of the District 6 Augusta Commission race, is now running for mayor, joining a crowded field.
The Richmond County school board member withdrew from the commission election just as a new GOP-led redistricting proposal removed him from District 6, and Gov. Brian Kemp has signed the plan into law.
The new map, which Hasan criticized but later said had not caused him to withdraw, also removed activist Michael Gallucci from District 6, where he planned to run for Richmond County Board of Education. Both are moved to District 5, which doesn't come open this year.
Mayor and commission candidate qualifying – with commission seats based on the new district lines – starts Monday. The school board elections are in November. Map opponents say they'll challenge it in court.
Friday, former Savannah River Site employee Tony Lewis announced his campaign for District 6 on the commission.
In a news release, Hasan said he was "the last living pioneer of the six leaders who led the way," Black Augusta elected leaders of the 1970s and 1980s: Former mayor Ed McIntyre, city council members B.L. Dent, Carrie J. Mays and Rep. R.A. Dent, along with himself, who became youngest and first Black Richmond County school board president in the early 1980s.
Hasan brings to 13 the number who have launched campaigns to replace term-limited Mayor Hardie Davis in the May election. He joins:
Charlie Hannah, Richmond County School Board president
Robert Ingham, tax preparer
Garnett Johnson, owner of Augusta Office Solutions
Lucas V. Johnson, employee at Thermal Ceramics
Steven Kendrick, Richmond County tax commissioner
Lori Myles, retired educator
Albert Newson, food-service worker
Marion Williams, former Augusta commissioner
Dennis Williams, Augusta commissioner
Augusta has a weak-mayor system in which the mayor lacks formal authority over budgets, hiring or other city business. As a second term mayor, Davis takes home a salary of $84,983 while his office budget is set at around $500,000.
This article originally appeared on Augusta Chronicle: A.K. Hasan now in race for Augusta mayor