ATLANTA, June 11, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Former Atlanta City Councilmember Alex Wan, a long-time Morningside homeowner and civic leader, conceded the race for Georgia House District 57 after a hard-fought contest. Ultimately, former gubernatorial candidate Stacey Evans prevailed.
Wan and his campaign had paused briefly after polls closed to ensure absentee ballots and provisional ballots were accounted for, noting they wanted "to ensure every vote was counted, every voice heard."
"While we did not achieve the result we wanted in yesterday's election," Wan says, "I am proud of the race we've run and will be eternally grateful for the breadth and diversity of support on this journey. Whether it was with their time, dollars, wisdom or other resources, many people made this campaign possible and I am honored by and appreciative of their contributions.
"I have congratulated Stacey and wish her well in representing the District. I have also very much enjoyed getting to know Kyle Lamont and Jenné Shepherd, who are both impressive community leaders," he says.
Wan announced his bid to represent Georgia State House District 57, following the December announcement by State Rep. Pat Gardner that she will retire after the 2020 General Assembly.
"While I will not be representing my neighbors in the legislature, this in no way ends my commitment to community and political engagement and activism," Wan says. "There were already so many ways to be involved and make a difference. This period of immense change in which we are currently living only heightens those opportunities.
"Of course, the failures we witnessed and experienced this election cycle were many and catastrophic," he says. "And, not because I think the outcome of this race would have been different, addressing these processes will certainly be among my areas of focus going forward. In particular, ensuring our state is better prepared for voting in general, including better equipment testing and training. We cannot overwhelm people and systems with absurd ratios of people-to-voting machines. We need more in-person early voting locations. We need to enhance, streamline and promote mail-in and absentee voting, and ensure transparency and accountability for that process and all others around voting -- the very heart of our democratic process."
"For now, I want to thank the poll workers who did the best they could in the circumstances they were thrust into through no failure of their own," Wan says. "I thank the good Samaritans who brought water, snacks, ponchos and good cheer to voters in the long lines. And I thank those engaged in the election process on all sides - candidates, campaign team members and others working hard to support their causes.
"Finally, I would like to note the many young people engaged in these campaigns and who we saw throughout this election process," he says. "It is heartwarming and encouraging. I applaud the lengths they and others went to to make their voices heard via our election process. Together - and to honor them - they and we should make that process more accessible, more efficient and more trustworthy.
"With that, I end this campaign just as I began it - a neighbor grateful for the opportunities I have had to serve my community and still committed to doing the work to move our communities forward together," Wan concluded.
He served as an Atlanta City Council member for Council District 6 (2010-2017). Since that time, he has continued his community service as the Fulton/Atlanta citizen representative on the Atlanta Regional Commission Board and as a member of the Mayor's LGBTQ Advisory Board.
Wan was the first Asian American and first openly gay man elected to the Atlanta City Council. His professional experience includes the private, public, non-profit and higher-education sectors. He is Executive Director of Horizons Atlanta, a nonprofit that provides tuition-free summer enrichment programs for children from traditionally underserved communities.
He holds a Bachelor's in Industrial Engineering from Georgia Tech and a Finance MBA from Wharton Business School and has completed educational programs at Dartmouth and Harvard. www.AlexWanForAtlanta.com.
B. Andrew (Drew) Plant
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SOURCE Alex Wan