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Two of three seats in council Super District 8 to change hands

By , Daily Memphian Updated: September 13, 2023 4:00 AM CT | Published: September 13, 2023 4:00 AM CT

The set of three city council members who represent Super District 8 will see two new faces when all of the votes are counted in the October Memphis elections.

Two of the three incumbents in the district, which covers half of the city, are not seeking another term on the council.

Two challengers look to unseat incumbent in District 6 race

Super District 8 Position 2 incumbent Cheyenne Johnson could have sought a second term but opted not to run. The district’s Position 3 incumbent, Martavius Jones, is term-limited.

Super District 8 Position 1 council member, JB Smiley Jr., is running unopposed on the October ballot.

Every Memphis voter is represented by and votes for four council members — a single district council member and each of the three positions in their super district.

The candidates for Super District 8 Position 2

Marion LaTroy Alexandria-Williams Jr. is a perennial candidate for numerous positions. His father’s endorsement ballots have included both of them in various runs for office and have drawn the ire of local Democratic party leaders for being misleading about who has the local party’s backing.

Davin D. Clemons is a retired Memphis Police officer who ran four years ago in council District 6. Clemons is a radio show host and ordained elder and minister who also publishes a magazine.

Janika White, an attorney, was a candidate in last year’s Democratic primary for Shelby County District Attorney General. White’s clients include the Shelby County Commission, which hired her earlier this year as a legal adviser.

Two candidates vie for District 4 council seat that each sees as their own

Cheyenne Johnson has endorsed White for the seat she’s leaving.

The candidates for Super District 8 Position 3

Berlin Boyd is a former city council member who lost a re-election bid in council District 7 four years ago. Boyd served two terms as council chairman and is one of two former council members on this year’s ballot trying to return to the body. The other is District 5 candidate Philip Spinosa. Both are campaigning on a return to the old council’s focus on an immediate response to crime and a more aggressive pursuit of economic development goals.

Lucille Catron is director of the Beale Street Development Corp. and owner of the Historic Daisy Theater on Beale — also known as the Old Daisy. The BSDC’s role in Beale Street’s development was changed in a settlement with the city that Catron disputes. By the terms of the deal, the Historic Daisy was to be converted into a cultural center and barred from its current use — being leased out as an event space. The theater’s current incarnation has an open outdoor bar that operates on the sidewalk. The DMC and Memphis Police said last month they intend to limit such outdoor bars.

Yolanda Cooper-Sutton is a Whitehaven activist who has owned several businesses and worked in home health care. She says she wants to address poverty and the various disparities that it causes in the city. In a 2021 video on her Facebook page, Cooper-Sutton complained specifically about the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine “that they are continually pushing on us.”

Brian Harris is an omni-channel director for Best Buy Inc., a position that involves sales across various platforms. Harris has held similar executive positions at Apple Inc. and Amazon. He also is a past council candidate. If elected, Harris says his priority would be economic development pointed toward reducing poverty.

Five compete for open City Council District 3 seat

Damon Curry Morris is a former educator and Orange Mound activist. Morris is one of five activists who were banned from Memphis-Shelby County Schools board meetings and fought the ban.

Jerred Price is a former president of the Downtown Neighborhood Association and a vocal critic of the Tom Lee Park redesign as well as plans for a St. Jude parking garage in the Uptown area. Price ran four years ago in the crowded District 7 race.

Dr. Paul Randolph Jr. is a retired physician specializing in obstetrics and gynecology and owner of Randolph Women’s Center in South Memphis.

Martavius Jones has not endorsed any of the candidates.

The Super District seats don’t have a runoff requirement, meaning whoever gets the most votes wins. (A majority of votes cast is required to win one of the council’s seven single-member district seats; if no candidate receives a majority, the top two finishers advance to a Nov. 16 runoff.)


2023 Memphis elections Memphis City Council council super districts

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Bill Dries

Bill Dries

Bill Dries covers city and county government and politics. He is a native Memphian and has been a reporter for more than 40 years.


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