Pledging to be a new voice with new ideas for Southern New Castle County and Bear, longtime civic advocate and public servant David B. Carter formally announced his candidacy for New Castle County Council’s 6th District seat Saturday in Middletown.

Joined by district residents who have known and worked with Carter for many years, the Townsend-area Democrat pledged to run a grassroots-focused campaign with a platform to help the county government handle growth in a way that better preserves Southern New Castle County’s unique quality of life, according to a press release.

“Southern New Castle and Bear have changed a great deal in recent years, and we have a lot of needs that have not been met by the County,” said Carter, a New Castle County native who has lived on a preserved farm near Townsend with his wife since 1999. “I am running to give our district a new voice and new ideas on County Council.”

In a press release, Carter said he has devoted his life to public service, both professionally and as a public servant. He served as an environmental manager for DNREC for many years. He has also served with many nonprofit and civic organizations including Common Cause, Our Daily Bread of MOT, Civic League for New Castle County, Delaware Audubon, Middletown Relay for Life, NCC Parks Task Force, Executive Meyer’s NCC Land Use and Economic Development Transition Team, and others.

“I have never shied away from a fight or for standing up for the people against powerful special interests,” said Carter in the press release. “Whether it was opposing polluters, shady insider deals wasting taxpayer money or speaking out against irresponsible development, I have always done what I thought was right. For years, I have fought for New Castle County residents as a public advocate. Now I am running to fight for my friends, neighbors, and the future of New Castle County.”

Many local residents attended his kickoff announcement, including Aaron Blythe, who worked with Carter last year on County Executive Matt Meyer’s parks task force, representing the Middletown area.

“Dave took a leadership role on the task force and made sure the voices of local residents were considered. To that end, he was instrumental in making sure task force meetings were held in the MOT area,” said Blythe. “Dave also conducted a community survey completed by hundreds of residents, which lead to a number of new ideas about how best to develop parks south of the canal."

Carter has the support of many area residents, including Debbie Heaton, who has long advocated for water and environmental protections, Leann Ferguson who has worked on local community advocacy efforts with David for years, and Kim Philipp, with whom Carter worked to help her preserve her family’s farm after her father, Corbit Collins, passed away.

“David has been a hard-working long-time community advocate since I met him over 20 years ago,” said Heaton. “He continues to bring forward new ideas in an effort to work toward solutions to the many issues plaguing the State and New Castle County. I am excited that he has stepped forward to run for County Council to represent the 6th District.”

Carter will be rolling out a series of policy proposals later in July and August, including plans to better manage population growth, provide necessary community services, preserve farmland and open space, increase the county’s use of renewable energy, and increase transparency and ethical standards in county government.

“We need a county government that can better plan and get in front of future growth,” Carter said. “We need to work together with our municipalities, community leaders, farmers and suburban residents to create solutions for our shared problems.

To be a new voice with new ideas on County Council, Carter drew a contrast with the 6th District’s incumbent who has missed 55 percent of meetings during the past three years, according to the press release.

“When I had a full-time job working for taxpayers protecting Delaware’s environment, I still found time to advocate for the causes I believed in,” Carter said. “My opponent, whose job is to represent the interests of voters, isn’t even bothering to show up more than half the time. That’s not acceptable and why the 6th District needs a new voice and new ideas and someone who will actually show up to fight for the district.”