East Dallas neighbor Paula Blackmon has announced her candidacy for the District 9 seat on the Dallas City Council.

Blackmon, the former chief of staff for Mayor Mike Rawlings, said Tuesday in a news release she will run for the seat vacated by Councilman Mark Clayton. Clayton said in January he will not seek re-election so he can spend more time with his family.

As a 25-year resident of East Dallas, Blackmon has served as deputy chief of staff to former Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert and senior advisor to Dallas Independent School District Superintendent Mike Miles. She was also the campaign manager for Larry Casto’s mayoral bid until he withdrew from the race Jan. 18.

If elected, she said she would focus on property tax stabilization, a healthy White Rock Lake, public safety and prioritizing District 9 with partner agencies, according to the release.

“As a longtime resident and advocate for our community, I have been privileged to serve alongside our city’s leaders — bringing the community perspective to City Hall and putting the needs of our residents above special interests,” Blackmon said in a statement.

Blackmon will face former Dallas Parks and Recreation Board member Paul Sims in the May 4 race.

“Dallas is our home. It’s where we’ve raised our three children and where we have shown them the importance of serving their community,” Blackmon said. “If elected, I will be that strong voice that D9 wants and deserves.”

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