Former Savannah Mayor Running For Vacant Georgia House Seat

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — A former Savannah mayor is running to fill a vacant seat in the Georgia legislature.

Edna Jackson filed qualifying paperwork this week for the Nov. 2 special election for state House District 165.

Jackson became the first Black woman to lead Georgia’s oldest city when she was elected mayor of Savannah in 2011. She lost her reelection bid four years later.

Now Jackson is running for the Savannah-based legislative seat formerly held by state Rep. Mickey Stephens, a Savannah Democrat who died Aug. 14 after an extended illness.

Jackson, a Savannah city council veteran before she became mayor, hasn't sought office since her 2015 mayoral defeat to Eddie DeLoach. The day before that election, she was in the hospital being treated for a heart attack.

“People ask me, ‘Why are you running again when I can just sit at home and live?’ And that I should look at the accomplishments that we have made in the past,” Jackson told the Savannah Morning News. “But that’s not important. You have to ask yourself: What are you doing with your life now?”

Three of Jackson's fellow Democrats have also signed up to run for the seat — Sabrina Kent, Antwan Lang and Clinton Young. Libertarian Clinton Cowart also joined the race.

Stephens, who died at age 77, held the House seat since 2009. He and Jackson had one thing in common — they both graduated in the same class from Savannah's Beach High School.