Tim Kelly, local entrepreneur, businessman, and civic leader "with a proven record of bringing people together," announced on Thursday his campaign for mayor of Chattanooga "with a message of hope and a vision for our community’s future."
The election is next March. Andy Berke will no longer be eligible to run after serving two terms.
Mr. Kelly is the owner of several local businesses, including Kelly Subaru and Southern Honda Powersports, the largest Honda powersports dealership in the nation. He is also the co-founder and chairman of the Chattanooga Football Club, which he said has become a national icon for independent clubs around the country due to its thriving fan base and its role as the first club in the nation to offer ownership shares to the general public.
Mr. Kelly has also served in many local public service and volunteer roles over the last 30 years, including most recently as the chairman of the Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga.
He announced the launch of the campaign from his home via livestream at 2 p.m. to friends, family, and residents across the city.
Mr. Kelly "acknowledged the challenges Chattanooga faces due to the COVID-19 crisis, focused on the urgency of the moment, and pressed the need to bring people together."
He said, “Right now, our city faces unprecedented challenges and many of our neighbors are struggling. But having grown up here, raised my kids here, and built my life here, I know the character of this community and I have witnessed us overcome difficult times in the past. That’s why I’m running to be your next mayor, because I believe our city needs a clear vision for the future that will put us on the path to recovery.
"We can come back from this crisis stronger than before, ensuring everyone in our community can thrive and succeed, regardless of their neighborhood or the color of their skin. Together, we can build a Chattanooga that works for everyone.”