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Another hat in the ring…
Fort Wayne Reader
Most Fort Wayne politicos thought it was coming, but on January 5, business man Eric Doden made it official — he’s seeking the Republican nomination for Fort Wayne Mayor.
Doden made the announcement to a sizeable crowd at GOP headquarters on Main Street. Like we said, attendance was good, though PA didn’t see a lot of political faces — city councilman Tom Smith was there, and county recorder John McGauley introduced Doden. Maybe we missed a couple more. But the crowd mostly seemed made up of business types, friends, and supporters. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, of course — we could see where not having a previous connection to government could be appealing to a big chunk of voters.
And, unlike GOP mayoral contenders Paula Hughes and Liz Brown, Doden is not in local government, and never has been. He is currently the director of investments at Ambassador Enterprises, a consulting, investment and private equity firm. Before that, he led the distribution and fabrication arms of Ambassador Steel Corporation.
During his announcement, Doden touted his business experience and his desire to… well, you know, make Fort Wayne good. “Once, Fort Wayne was a center of innovation and entrepreneurship,” he said. “Today, while our community has much strength, economists too often describe Fort Wayne as a ‘Rust Belt’ city. This doesn’t have to be our destiny. With strong leadership that engages community leaders, civic institutions, and all the residents of our city and a bold plan for reform and revitalization, Fort Wayne can experience an economic revitalization.”
He also said “It is time for city and county officials to work together…to make Fort Wayne a city of opportunity again by removing the barriers of excessive government regulation.”
And there was another statement that raised a few eyebrows, even among a sympathetic crowd: “We have a plan to work with our banking community and private equity investors to complete $100 million worth of new projects in Fort Wayne over the next four years without increasing government spending or raising taxes.”
Well, whenever you’re ready, we’d like to see that…
As we write this, Ivan Hood is supposedly declaring his candidacy for an “At-large” spot on Fort Wayne’s City Council. We covered Hood’s 2007 run for mayor in FWR #76, and in our last issue, PA wondered if Hood’s city council campaign was real. Apparently, it is.