The Student News Site of Appalachian State University

The Appalachian

The Student News Site of Appalachian State University

The Appalachian

The Student News Site of Appalachian State University

The Appalachian

Newsletter Signup

Get our news delivered straight to your inbox every week.

* indicates required

Mayoral ballot set with three candidates

The filing period at the Watauga Board of Elections office officially closed at noon Friday with two more candidates entering the Boone mayoral race.

Brad Harmon, who helps run Harmon’s Dixie Pride at 471 W. King St., and John Joseph Mena, owner of Haircut 101 at 174 Depot St., were last to announce their candidacy as Boone Town Councilman Andy Ball had filed July 5.

Harmon’s family has been in Boone for several generations. He graduated from Watauga High School in 1982 and moved to Marion where he served his community as a corrections officer and volunteer firefighter. 

Harmon moved back to Boone in 2009. Harmon has also worked on the town parking committee for three years. 
“I’m business-minded and I think of the people as family,” he said.

Harmon said some of the biggest concerns he recognizes are student safety, calling for security cameras on the streets and a “continued relationship” between the town and Appalachian State University and eliminating closed sessions in town government.

“I want to listen to the people and carry that into town council,” Harmon said. “I’m looking forward to the challenge of what is to come and to see if I can make a difference.”

Mena has been a business owner in Boone for 24 years and says that he is tired of political divisions acting as roadblocks for the town’s progress.

“I feel that this town is worth a lot more time, energy and effort than has been put into it,” Mena said. “I’m not a career politician. I win this election, I’ll do it for four years and I’m out.”

Mena said his plan would call for changing Boone’s Unified Development Ordinance to allow for housing development within town limits in order to increase the tax revenue base. Additional funding from this change, he said, would allow for improvements to a faltering water and sewer infrastructure.

Mena said he hopes to bring in more businesses to the area so that graduating students from Appalachian wouldn’t have to go down the mountain to find employment.

“There’s a lot we can get done if we work together synergistically,” Mena said.

Mena also said he sees Appalachian as a huge resource for Boone and wants to utilize it by allowing students to come up with planning ideas rather than paying an outside consultant.

“The quote that I really want to sum up my campaign is from FDR,* ‘Do what you can where you are with what you have,’” Mena said. “I don’t have all the answers, but I’m willing to work my ass off to get those answers.”

Ball said that he had contacted each of his opponents to congratulate them on filing. He said that all the candidates had agreed to run “substantive, issue-based” campaigns.

Ball, who said he has known Harmon for three years and Mena for eight, said he is still the best choice.

“I don’t think that any other candidate offers the experience that I have,” Ball said.

*Correction: The Appalachian incorrectly stated that Boone mayoral candidate John Mena said the quote to sum up his campaign was from FDR when in fact he correctly identified it as a quote by Theodore Roosevelt. The Appalachian apologizes for this error.

Story: JOSHUA FARMER, Managing Editor

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Appalachian
$1271
$5000
Contributed
Our Goal

We hope you appreciate this article! Before you move on, our student staff wanted to ask if you would consider supporting The Appalachian's award-winning journalism. We are celebrating our 90th anniversary of The Appalachian in 2024!

We receive funding from the university, which helps us to compensate our students for the work they do for The Appalachian. However, the bulk of our operational expenses — from printing and website hosting to training and entering our work into competitions — is dependent upon advertising revenue and donations. We cannot exist without the financial and educational support of our fellow departments on campus, our local and regional businesses, and donations of money and time from alumni, parents, subscribers and friends.

Our journalism is produced to serve the public interest, both on campus and within the community. From anywhere in the world, readers can access our paywall-free journalism, through our website, through our email newsletter, and through our social media channels. Our supporters help to keep us editorially independent, user-friendly, and accessible to everyone.

If you can, please consider supporting us with a financial gift from $10. We appreciate your consideration and support of student journalism at Appalachian State University. If you prefer to make a tax-deductible donation, or if you would prefer to make a recurring monthly gift, please give to The Appalachian Student News Fund through the university here: https://securelb.imodules.com/s/1727/cg20/form.aspx?sid=1727&gid=2&pgid=392&cid=1011&dids=418.15&bledit=1&sort=1.

Donate to The Appalachian
$1271
$5000
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Appalachian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *