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Local pastor is joining race for city mayor


A fourth candidate has entered the race to become Fredericksburg’s next mayor.

Matt Paxson, an associate pastor at Fairview Baptist Church, announced Wednesday through email  that he will run for mayor.

Fredericksburg Voter Registrar Juanita Pitchford said that he has already qualified to be on the May 1 ballot.

Paxson’s announcement comes after Ward 3 City Councilman Fred Howe III, Vice Mayor Mary Katherine Greenlaw and local business owner Ryan Bullock declared their candidacies for mayor.

Fredericksburg Mayor Tom Tomzak said  earlier this year that he would not seek a third term.

Howe and Greenlaw have also qualified to be on the ballot, Pitchford said.

Paxson, 32, says he is “the first candidate who has an agenda.”

 “My candidacy is going to be about solutions,” he said.

 Paxson said he spent a year developing his plan.

He wants to “reclaim the downtown riverfront” and develop the Sophia Street corridor, target incentives to secure new businesses and more private investment in Fredericksburg, and increase marketing and promotion of the city to increase tourism, among other things.

He also wants to revisit the city’s decision to build new  courthouse facilities.

 Paxson is originally from Bryan, Ohio, and has lived in Virginia for 10 years.

He went to Oral Roberts University in Oklahoma for his undergraduate degree, and earned two master’s degrees—one in divinity and one in public policy and government—from Regent University in Virginia Beach.

He’s married and lives in Ward 1, in Great Oaks.

Paxson has set up a website and Facebook page for his campaign.


Robyn Sidersky 540/374-5413