Councilman Brian Miller endorses Alexander in mayoral election

Published 12:00 am Sunday, October 31, 2021

SALISBURY — City Council member Brian Miller, the longest-serving incumbent, has endorsed Mayor Karen Alexander in the city’s first mayoral election.

Alexander and Miller have served three terms together as council members. Miller, who works for Truist Financial (formerly BB&T), was first elected in 2009 and spent some time on the Salisbury Planning Board prior to his tenure. Alexander was first appointed to City Council in 2013 after former Mayor Susan Kluttz became the North Carolina Cultural Resources secretary. Later that year, Alexander was elected to her first full term on the council.

In his endorsement letter, Miller asked his supporters to give the same support he’s received in the previous 12 years to Alexander. Saying he’s served with both candidates — Alexander and Al Heggins — Miller said Alexander “is the better leader, better consensus building and better at advocating for our entire community.” He said Alexander has served the community for many years before her election and is well respected in all of the city’s neighborhoods, by business leaders and by local institutions.

“She is well connected with other mayors across North Carolina and has been someone that I have relied on often during my time on the council for her insight and perspective,” said Miller, who chose not to run for re-election.

While every election is referred to as the most important ever, Miller said the next council will choose a city manager and establish an agenda for the future of the city.

“There are bright days ahead for Salisbury, but we need to select the right leaders to make the tough choices that are before us,” he said in his endorsement message. “ Please join me in supporting Mayor Karen Alexander in the Salisbury mayoral race, and please encourage your friends and family to do so as well.”

Reached Saturday by the Post, Miller said he wanted to let the letter speak for itself and that his intent was to support one candidate without tearing down the other.

Alexander told the Post she was “honored and humbled by his words,” particularly because they’ve been through many years of challenges and crises together. Accounting for closed session meetings where council members have had to deliberate and work through issues, Alexander said that time has helped her to know Miller on a deeper level.

“It means the world to me because he saw all of us under those same conditions,” Alexander said. “So it’s particularly meaningful for me.”

Much of the sitting council’s term has involved a slew of challenges stemming from the pandemic and subsequent economic recovery, racial justice protests following the death of George Floyd in 2020 and the relocation of the “Fame” Confederate monument. One of the top priorities for the newly elected council will involve the selection of a new city manager following Lane Bailey’s departure in December.