A 40-year-old Cairo man who says he wants to help create opportunities for future generations to remain here to work and raise their families qualified Monday to run for mayor.
Daniel L. Hammond, 1556 Lullwater Cir. S.E., inked qualifying papers on the first day of qualifying and said he anticipated this being an unconventional election.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Hammond said he would work to get his message out to as many voters as possible, but could not go door-to-door or shake lots of hands soliciting votes.
“The traditional way of campaigning is not possible during this crisis. I want people to know that I’m not ignoring anyone and I will try to share my message with everyone, but I will be adhering to the Centers for Disease Control guidelines for the safety of myself and others,” Hammond said Tuesday.
This is Hammond’s first foray into local politics, but he says he understands the role of mayor in Cairo. “This is a ‘weak’ mayor form of government we have. I will work with the council in a positive relationship. It certainly will not be my way or the highway. I understand the mayor’s lane,” he said.
Hammond, who is an owner-employee of Garland Company of Cleveland, Ohio, works as a commercial roofing manufacturing representative. His territory includes Georgia, Florida and Alabama. Hammond has been involved in numerous large roofing projects including the administration building at Florida A&M University, the Leon County Courthouse, facilities at Tallahassee Community College and work for Early County, Georgia schools to name a few. Hammond has been associated with Garland Company for the last three years.
The mayoral candidate would not discuss any agenda or goals in advance of the election. Hammond said, if elected, he would be spending the weeks and months following the election becoming more familiar with the operations of city government and issues facing the city before he would have any opinions or take particular positions on issues.
“It has been my experience working in business and dealing with CEOs that it is best to listen and become better educated before you try to institute change,” Hammond said.
“My only motivation for seeking this job is to do what I can to make Cairo a place where my children and their children can get an education, go off to college if that’s their choice, and then be able to come back here to live and work. When I get older, I’d rather not have to travel to Atlanta or Savannah or some other place to visit my grandchildren. I’d rather them be right here close by. I want that for all children. If I can help create those opportunities then I will have succeeded in my goal,” Hammond said.
Hammond and his wife, Georgia, are the parents of three children, a set of twins who are 8 and a third child who is 3. Mrs. Hammond is nurse manager for Wellness Life of Cairo.
Hammond graduated from Cairo High School in 1998 and from Valdosta State University in 2006. Other than short stints living in Mexico Beach, Fla., and Lee County, Ga., the couple have lived in Grady County.
He is the son of Sandra Corbin, a local resident. His father passed away in 1998.