Mecklenburg commissioner Dumont Clarke, one of the county’s longest-serving elected officials, plans to step down when his current term ends next year.
A Democrat, Clarke was first elected in 2000. Only Republican commissioner Bill James has served longer.
“At the end of the first year of each two-year cycle, you have to ask yourself, ‘Is what I can achieve by running for another two-year term worth the personal and emotional cost?’” Clarke said in a statement. “I have concluded this time, for many reasons, it is not.”
Clarke said his decision was made easier by the emergence of “highly-energized younger Democrats” who hope to run for the seat. A new representative, he said, will bring “a fresh perspective, renewed energy and contacts with different parts of the community.”
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Clarke said he’s supporting Leigh Altman, a Democratic activist from Dilworth. Democrat Mark Jerrell, who managed the Charlotte City Council campaign of Justin Harlow, also plans to run.
The heavily Democratic District 4 stretches east from central Charlotte to Cabarrus County.