JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Alvin Brown wants to be Jacksonville's next mayor, and stopping by and saying "hello" is his way of getting to know the voters.
He visits the Jacksonville Landing's lunch crowd. "I need your support and help. Now spread the word, 'down with Brown'," he said to a passerby at The Landing.
The Landing and its surrounding downtown area is a focal point for the mayoral candidate, he said. "We have to have a healthy downtown."
The current executive in residence at Jacksonville University's Davis school of business, he said his background of overcoming adversity sets him apart from the rest.
"When I couldn't pay my tuition, my pastor co-signed a loan so I wouldn't drop out of college," he said. "So I would finish school."
A graduate of Jacksonville University, he calls himself the outsider in this race. But while this is his first run for political office, Brown is not new to the political arena.
He spent years as a senior advisor to President Bill Clinton and Vice President Al Gore - experience he said will pay off. "We'll be able to call someone like President Clinton to help us recruit business here," he said.
But his main isssue is jobs. "That's the number one thing I'm gonna focus on, jobs. I'm gonna be the jobs mayor."
His plan is to bring jobs to Jacksonville by drawing more attention to the Port. "Doing a public/private partnership would be the key. Getting it dredged to 50 feet so we can expand and accelerate the initiative, that's one thing.
The next critical element that has to change is getting Jacksonville living within its means and that means cutting salaries, he said.
"As mayor, I would take a 20 percent pay cut," he said. "I would make sure I'd look at all the appointees."
Brown also said during two terms in office he wants to bring a NBA team to Jacksonville.
First Coast News