For residents living inside Oxford city limits, municipal election campaigns are now underway.
Potential voters must have already registered to vote to participate in the 2021 election for aldermen and mayor of Oxford. Registered voters who cannot be present to cast votes in the June 8, 2021, election are eligible to cast absentee votes. Any registered voter who wishes to cast an absentee ballot must take valid photo identification to the lobby of Oxford’s City Hall, where a voting area is set up.
Two seats go uncontested this year: incumbents Rick Addy (Ward I) and Kesha Howell-Atkinson (Ward IV) run unopposed in the general election. Wards II, III, V, VI, and the at-large alderman will be decided by Oxonians on June 8. We’ve asked each candidate a few short questions to help voters make up their minds before hitting the booths on that date.
In this issue, we feature the candidates for Wards III, V, and Mayor of Oxford. Q&As for Wards II, VI, and Alderman-at-Large were in The Local Voice #371, which is available on our website.
Not sure of your Ward? Check out the map on page 7, or visit TheLocalVoice.net/aldermen
Preston Taylor (Incumbant, D)
Editor’s note: We attempted multiple times over the last month to contact Alderman Preston Taylor and unfortunately, all attempts were unanswered, and remain unanswered.
Barney Chadwick (R)
1. Tell us about yourself and your connection to Oxford.
My family has always had close ties with Oxford. My wife Jeanne, son and daughter Hudson and Elizabeth all attended the University of Mississippi. We loved Oxford so much that 10 years ago we decided to relocate from Jackson and make Oxford our forever home. As an entrepreneur, I have started several small businesses in Oxford including Goose Creek Tennis Club and with son Hudson, Rafters restaurants.
2. Why did you decide to run for office? Have you engaged in public service previously?
The small business community has experienced very tough times during the pandemic. Many fellow business owners reached out to me and ask me to run for Alderman and be a voice for small businesses. Though I have had vast experience serving on various business boards and committees, this is the first time I have run for public office.
3. What are your top priorities for Oxford?
Ward 5 faces a unique challenge as relates to the dense commerce development on Jackson Avenue. I support developing an infrastructure and transportation plan that addresses the current needs of traffic flow not only for this district but for all the citizens of Oxford. I am a strong advocate for maintaining a vibrant downtown square district, respecting and preserving Oxford’s rich historical culture while preparing for the continued growth of the city. I recognize and support the importance of the University of Mississippi and its relationship to Oxford and I will be a voice for small businesses to “Move Oxford forward”.