Mar 2, 2010

Foster, Vaughan to run for council

by Melinda Zosh

Close friends and supporters gathered at the Premier Room on Feb. 25 to hear Mayor Joan Foster announce that she is seeking re-election to Lynchburg City Council. She will be running as an independent in the May 4 election.

Foster isn’t the only one who threw her hat in the city council race last week. Real estate salesman and lifelong Lynchburg resident J.P. Vaughan announced that he too will run as an independent.

Vaughan attended E.C. Glass High School and then Hampden-Sydney College. He worked for a General Electric (GE) program immediately after graduation. He planned to leave Lynchburg after two years, but he could not leave his home.

“I have always had an interest in (this city). I love Lynchburg,” Vaughan said.

Vaughan lived the first 22 years of his life on Park Avenue and pledged to work for the entire city, not just one section.

“I do not want to represent one faction or group of the city,” Vaughan said, adding that he was on the Lynchburg City Planning Commission for 10 years. “I want to look at what is best for the entire city.”

Vaughan’s dream is to eliminate the “us versus them” mentality in the city by bringing more cooperation and teamwork to the city council. Liberty students have a right to vote in the upcoming election, he said. His son voted in local elections when he attended Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C.

“Students at Liberty are probably so much more informed that we were as students on national and international issues,” Vaughan said. “I hope they will get involved locally. I have never met a (Liberty student) that I did not like.”

Foster, who holds three degrees in education, will be focusing on the quality of life in Lynchburg, including education, she said. An outstanding education system will attract businesses to the city.

“In this time that is so difficult for us economically, we have to concentrate on education,” Foster said. “It is most important that we keep our businesses here.”

Locally owned, small businesses comprise 85 percent of businesses in the community, according to Foster. Most of the city’s revenue comes from sales tax and food taxes, she said.

At press time, the candidates for the three at-large seats on city council are Foster, Vaughan, Liberty student Brent Robertson, Ted Hannon, Don Good and Hunseon Cary, according to Lynchburg Registrar’s Office.

The deadline for voter registration is April 12.

Contact Melinda Zosh at


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