RACHELE FRUIT PROFILE:
Rachele Fruit is running for Atlanta City Council president as part of her long-running stance on improving the plight of the working class.
“I have been active in workers’ struggles for the past 40 years,” said Fruit. “Working people are living through the worst economic crisis since the 1930s, with long-term unemployment, attacks on our wages, safety and our rights.”
Fruit earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania. She is married to Glenn Swanson.
Fruit, a factory worker, is a longtime member of the Socialist Workers Party.
In reinforcing the linchpin of her campaign, the 64-year-old referenced her advocacy efforts on behalf of workers — including speaking out at an Atlanta Board of Education meeting earlier this month in defense of school bus drivers seeking compensation for work performed and safer working conditions.
“[Unsavory] conditions like these are compelling more and more workers to fight — from coal miners to school bus drivers to dockworkers, sanitation workers and many others,” Fruit said. “Working people need our own political organizations, independent of the Democrats and Republicans and whose candidates and elected officials defend the system of exploitation we live under. Our campaign provides an alternative that workers and their allies can support.”
Fruit listed jobs as the top issue of her campaign platform.
“We call for a massive government-funded public works program to put millions to work building the things we need instead of cutting social services,” Fruit said. “Fighting for and winning such a concession from the capitalist government would cut across the competition among workers, make us more united and confident to fight for the things we need. Workers with or without ‘proper’ documents have a right to work. We support all efforts to raise the minimum wage.”
CEASAR MITCHELL PROFILE:
Editor’s note: Ceasar Mitchell did not return a reporter’s emails and phone calls last week seeking comment on the election. Information in this article was provided by his campaign website.
Atlanta City Council President Ceasar Mitchell is seeking re-election.
Mitchell holds degrees in economics and English from Morehouse College; he also earned a law degree from the University Of Georgia School Of Law.
Mitchell is a commercial real estate and finance attorney with the law firm of DLA Piper LLP. He and wife, Tiffany, have two young daughters, Canon and Czarya.
As a public official, Mitchell advocates for safer communities through specific initiatives including police foot patrols. He has also supported key legislation facilitating economic revitalization in underdeveloped areas by authoring measures to create four of the city’s 10 tax allocation districts and supporting legislation for community input in the Beltline project.
Mitchell also cites his efforts to “make Atlanta clean, green, safe and thriving” by creating a parks advisory group to provide recommendations for Atlanta to achieve and sustain a world-class parks and recreation system with a governance structure. Additionally, he created a Clean Green Team to provide technical assistance and resources to 22 community groups to improve their neighborhoods. He also led the charge to turn an unpaved road into the Cahaba Drive Walking Trail, a safe path for a southwest Atlanta neighborhood.
Mitchell is “actively committed” to the education and enrichment of city youth as reflected in his annual College Prep Series — a college admissions exam preparation program. More than 5,000 middle and high school students and their parents have participated since 2006.