Candidate Profile: Gwendolyn Davis Kennedy, Richland County Council, District 7
Incumbent Kennedy defends her seat against political newcomer Torrey Rush in the June 12 Democratic primary.
When voters in District 7 head to the polls on Tuesday, they'll have a choice in the Democratic primary between incumbent Gwendolyn Davis Kennedy and challenger Torrey Rush.
The district covers northern Richland County, including Spring Valley.
The winner faces Republican Celestine Parker in November.
Name: Gwen Kennedy
Occupation: Retired Educator
Current Political Position: Richland County Council, District 7
Years in Office: 3
Prior experience (political/civil/etc): Served on Richland County Council from 1990 – 1997; Member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority; Member of Emmanuel AME Church
Family: Married to Reverend Theodore Kennedy; Two daughters and one son, and nine grandchildren
Education: Graduate of C.A. Johnson High School; Graduate of Benedict College, University of South Carolina and Temple University
Why are you seeking re-election?
While troubling times are hitting municipalities all around us, Richland County is in very good financial shape. During my term, and these rough economic times, we did not cut any public services, or lay any employees off and managed to position the County for future smart growth. I am running for re-election because Richland County is on a positive track and we need someone with a proven track record of listening, communicating and be the voice of District 7, as decisions are made on Council.
What makes you the best person for the job?
My experience, and leadership are reasons why I am a better woman for the job. When a person or community has concerns you want the woman that has the support of Council, Sheriff, and most of the departments at the county to handle your concerns.
What are the most important issues you would address if elected?
The most important issues are my voter’s issues; my one and only promise is to continue to listen, communicate and be the voice of District 7, as I make decisions on behalf of the County.
What are some of the repeated concerns you have heard from residents of District 7, and how would propose to address them?
The two most occurring concerns are crime, and protection on property values. Sheriff Lott is a supporter and I have been working with the Sheriff and his staff on making our streets safe, and improving the pay of our deputies and will continue to do so. I'm responsible for our county’s unsafe-housing ordinance, and will work on other ways of protecting citizen property value.
Are there any other comments you would like to make, or would you like to discuss something not raised in our questions?
I am in favor of expanding our County’s economic growth opportunities; my opponent opposed the sports complex, and the $100 million economic impact to the county. With more than 30 years in education, I am for improving our public schools; my opponent is in favor of and working for charter schools. My opponent promised us to run a clean race, and soon as things got rough, well just check your mail. I understand the situations may change but your comments should not!
Editor's Note: To view the profile of challenger Torrey Rush, click here.