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Jack Young Confirms 2020 Mayoral Run, After Automatically Ascending To Mayor’s Office

AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana


After months of rumors, Baltimore Mayor Jack Young confirmed on Tuesday he will formally announce a 2020 mayoral race this weekend.

The mayor confirmed his run to the Baltimore Sun after the Baltimore Brew published an article with alleged details of the Saturday campaign announcement. 

Young, formerly City Council President, automatically took Baltimore’s top office after former Mayor Catherine Pugh resigned amid a self-dealing scandal in May. Nearly immediately, Young was tasked with dealing with a ransomware attack that stunted citywide services. 

Young, 65, has decades of experience throughout City Hall, where he has served as a councilman, council president and as mayor. 

His first job in politics was in the office of then-City Council President Mary Pat Clarke. He served as her aide on nights and weekends, during time off from his day job as an administrator at Johns Hopkins. 

Young served as a city council member from 1996 to 2010, and was then voted by his council peers to the office of City Council President after former Mayor Shelia Dixon’s resignation amid corruption charges sent former City Council President Stephanie Rawlings-Blake to the top office.

He hails from East Baltimore. Young graduated from Northern High School and attended Baltimore City Community College.

City Council President Brandon Scott declared his mayoral run in mid September. Scott and Young are the only elected officials gunning for mayor. Other Democratic candidates include Baltimore activist Carlmichael “Stokey” Cannady and Thiru Vignarajah, a former state Deputy Attorney General and former candidate for Baltimore City State's Attorney.

Former Mayor Sheila Dixon and former Baltimore Police Department spokesman T.J. Smith, both Democrats, are also considering runs for the top office.  

Democrats outnumber Republicans by nearly 10-1 in Baltimore, meaning the winner of the April 24 primary will likely win the citywide general election. The filing deadline to run for office is Jan. 24.

Emily Sullivan is a city hall reporter at WYPR, where she covers all things Baltimore politics. She joined WYPR after reporting for NPR’s national airwaves. There, she was a reporter for NPR’s news desk, business desk and presidential conflicts of interest team. Sullivan won a national Edward R. Murrow Award for an investigation into a Trump golf course's finances alongside members of the Embedded team. She has also won awards from the Chesapeake Associated Press Broadcasters Association for her use of sound and feature stories. She has provided news analysis on 1A, The Takeaway, Here & Now and All Things Considered.
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