New candidate enters Richmond mayoral race

Posted at 6:47 PM, Jun 15, 2012
and last updated 2012-06-15 22:10:29-04

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) - A new candidate has entered the race for Richmond mayor this week.

Michael Ryan Jr. told CBS 6 News' Sandra Jones that he brings energy, enthusiasm, and determination to the race.

Ryan said that after he talked with area voters, some in Mayor Dwight Jones' own district, that many folks want a change.

"I'm in it to win it," said Ryan. "I've lived in Richmond a long time. I continually see us accept second place when first is available.

That's the focus for the 46-year-old Ryan, who has been selling homes in the River City for over a decade, and now wants to run the city.

"As a real estate professional, it's a 24-7 job,” said Ryan.  “There's not going to be another person that can out work me, out hustle me." 

Ryan said his platform will include improving Richmond Public Schools, building a strong transportation system and bring more grocery stores to the city.

"There really are no major big box stores or shopping places in Richmond, with the exception of Kroger's and Lowe's," said Ryan. "I'm tired of having to get in my car to go to Henrico and Chesterfield."

Ryan filed petitions this week at the city's registrar's office, just an hour before the deadline.

"You needed 500 signatures, 50 in each district," said Ryan. "That was a full-time job.” 

Even though Ryan has the required signatures, he is not sure it will be enough to get past the Mayor Dwight Jones' well-oiled machine at city hall.

"Five-and-a-half months in politics is a lifetime," said Ryan. "I know I'm an underdog.  I know I'm a long shot. I do know that there's a lot of people who want some things differently and they want a different candidate to take a look at.  And I think, I bring a fresh perspective to the table.”

A third candidate, L. Shirley Harvey, is also running for mayor. CBS 6 News is also reaching out to her about vision for the city.

Stay with and CBS 6 News for complete coverage of the Richmond mayoral race.