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Sharon Owens, candidate for the position of Henderson Mayor, was the guest of honor on Thursday’s edition of WIZS’ Town Talk.
A resident of Montgomery Street in Henderson, Owens is running against incumbent Eddie Ellington in the October 8, 2019, City of Henderson election.
Noting that her decision to run for mayor has been a topic of much self-reflection over the past year, Owens, a budget analyst with Durham Public Schools and an evangelist with Greater Refuge Church Henderson, said it was both prayer and her concern for the City of Henderson that led her to file.
“I have a deep concern for the City of Henderson,” Owens said. “When I look at the area now and compare it with other cities of the same size, or even compare it to our past, I am concerned.”
Owens, who has lived in Henderson all of her life minus a year she spent in Richmond, VA, said she is saddened by what issues such as crime, drugs, gangs and lack of viable job opportunities have done to the area she calls home.
“It breaks my heart when I look at how the downtown buildings have gone down, the stores have moved; nothing is like it used to be,” lamented Owens. “I can’t help but wonder what is the mindset of the City Council for downtown development and the city as a whole.”
Citing economic development as one of Henderson’s major issues, Owens said she would like to focus on bringing more jobs to the area by offering companies additional incentives. “We need to give some kind of incentive for jobs to come to the City of Henderson. When people have income and good housing, it makes them feel good about themselves and makes them want to do better.”
Acknowledging that the mayor works very closely with the city manager, Owens said she’d like to see those two positions take a more grassroots approach to affecting change in the community.
“I think that relationship should be such that we could go out into neighborhoods and talk to people at their level about [issues such as] drugs, gangs and murder, talk to people who it directly affects,” said Owens. “If we are being honest, it does not affect everyone.”
After stating the entire City of Henderson should be treated as a whole, Owens conceded, “Some areas of the city require a little more attention than others, especially the areas of high poverty.”
Owens said that she feels progress is being made in addressing issues that often accompany areas of high poverty but believes more can be done. She also believes that she is just the person to do it.
“I’m not saying that the Mayor and City Council aren’t doing a great job; they are doing a magnificent job,” Owens said.”I just believe that I can take it a little bit further.”
For more information on Owens’ campaign, visit her website by clicking here.
(This is not a paid political advertisement. WIZS is in communication with incumbent Eddie Ellington to participate in a similar interview.)
To hear Owens’ Town Talk interview in its entirety, please click the play button below. Listen live to WIZS’ Town Talk Monday-Friday at 11 a.m. on 1450AM, 100.1 FM or online at www.wizs.com.