Wan again gains support of statewide organization as he seeks Atlanta’s second-highest office after two successful terms as a City Councilperson.
Atlanta, August 7, 2017 – Atlanta City Councilmember Alex Wan, who is seeking the second-highest elected position in Atlanta government – Atlanta City Council President, has been endorsed by Georgia Equality (www.GeorgiaEquality.org), the state’s largest statewide LGBT advocacy group.
“Through his work these past seven years on City Council and through his many years of broad community activism and engagement in the greater Atlanta community, Alex has demonstrated that he is the best candidate to lead City Council as its President,” says Jeff Graham, Executive Director of Georgia Equality.
“We are proud to endorse him in his bid for this crucial position, especially at a time when the new City Council President will need to work with a new Mayor and a Council on which nearly half the members will be new. Atlanta and our community has made great strides under his leadership and we look forward to his continuing, collaborative leadership and fiscal stewardship.”
Georgia Equality, which was founded in 1995, works to advance fairness, safety and opportunity for Georgia’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and allied communities.“I am grateful for this nod from Georgia Equality, and especially appreciative that they recognize me not just as a gay candidate, but for my ongoing commitment to the community, and a willingness to take this next step, serving the City I love in a much broader role,” Wan says. “I do believe I have earned the vote not only of LGBT Atlanta residents, but of all of the diverse stakeholders of our City. I will continue to bring people together, working through a lens of transparency and sustainability, as a strong, vocal, and positive advocate.”
In announcing Georgia Equality’s support of Wan, Graham notes some of the ways in which the Councilman has delivered on matters that are important to the LGBT community, including helping strengthen the city’s non-discrimination policy regarding gender identity and co-sponsoring City legislation opposing the Georgia Legislature’s efforts to implement a so-called religious freedom act (RFRA).
Earlier this year, Wan received the endorsement of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund (www.VictoryFund.org), the only national organization dedicated to increasing the number of openly lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender elected officials at all levels of government. Both Victory Fund and Georgia Equality also endorsed Wan in 2009 and 2013, during his successful campaigns for City Council District 6.
“These endorsements demonstrate Alex’s continued strength, support and viability,” says Doug Teper, the former state representative and political consultant who serves as Wan’s campaign manager. “It’s been exciting for us to see the enthusiasm of voters across the City as they see Alex is ready and eager to continue working on tough issues like transportation, infrastructure, affordable housing, operational efficiency, sound fiscal stewardship, public safety, individual and collective economic prosperity, a healthy environment and quality of life.
In his bid for Council President, Wan says he will continue to leverage deep roots in the community, long-time civic leadership, business acumen and his record during seven years at city hall, including many roles in council leadership, such as President Pro Tempore (2015), Chair of the City Utilities Committee (2017), Chair of the Finance/Executive Committee (2014-2016), Chair of the Zoning Committee (2012), Vice Chair of the Community Development/Health Services Committee (2010-2011), Member of the City Budget Commission (2010, 2012-2016), and Member of the Commission on Waste and Inefficiency in Government (2014).
Wan was first elected to the City Council District 6 post in 2009 and easily earned a second term in 2013 with 76 percent of the vote, both times garnering a broad base of support. He is the first Asian American and first openly gay man to serve on Atlanta City Council. He is Director of Development and Alumni Relations at Emory University.
Raised in Atlanta and a Morningside homeowner for over 20 years, Wan was perhaps best known before his Council win for long-time community involvement, including service on the Invest Atlanta (formerly Atlanta Development Authority) Board and founding For the Kid in All of Us, an all-volunteer non-profit serving children in need. He currently serves on Boards of Directors for the Piedmont Park Conservancy, the Little Five Points Community Improvement District (CID), and the Olmsted Linear Park Association.
He holds a Bachelor’s in Industrial Engineering from Georgia Tech, a Finance MBA from Wharton Business School, and has completed educational programs at Dartmouth and Harvard.
The Atlanta City Council President is elected city wide, presiding at all Council meetings and voting in the event of a tie. The president of the Council also appoints chairs and members of the various committees. Council President also serves as vice mayor, acting for the mayor in certain instances. The Atlanta City Council President is elected for a four-year term, with the election to be held in November 2017, taking office in January 2018. The current City Council President is running for mayor.