First-term Tacoma City Councilman Ryan Mello, appointed last year to serve the final two years of a vacant at-large seat, officially announced today he’s running for the seat’s next four-year term later this election year.
In building his support for the campaign, Mello has already secured endorsements from key local organizations such as the Tacoma-Pierce County Association of Realtors, Tacoma Firefighters, and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers as well as several elected officials including Mayor Marilyn Strickland. Mello also has strong support from neighborhood and community leaders, environmental leaders, minority leaders, and the faith community.
In little more than a year on council, Mello, 32, is among a small faction of current members who consistently and publicly question (and occasionally disagree with) City Manager Eric Anderson about some of his budget actions and policy recommendations.
Mello cites as accomplishments “promoting economic development and creating local jobs, securing efficient transportation solutions, protecting our environment, and reinforcing the city’s basic services like park maintenance, street improvements and pothole repair.”
Other than Mello, no other candidate has filed for the city-wide Position 8 seat. In Jan. 2010, the council appointed Mello, along with fellow council applicant David Boe, to fill two at-large four-year council seats vacated mid-term after sitting members won election to other public offices. Boe is also seeking election for the at-large Position 7 seat he now holds.
Other council hopefuls who’ve formally filed state candidacy papers this year include Joseph Atkinson, Anders Ibsen and Karen Smitherman — all running for the Position 1 seat being vacated by term-limited Councilman Spiro Manthou; and Robert Jesse Hill, who has filed to challenge Boe for the Position 7 seat.