NATCHEZ, Miss. (WLBT) - Mayor Darryl Grennell speaks out for the first time since announcing he will not seek a second term in office in the 2020 election.
Grennell won in a landslide victory for mayor of Natchez back in 2016 but now he says he’s ready for a new challenge.
“Yes, I will miss being the mayor of the city of Natchez but the whole time, I’ve never looked at myself as mayor I looked at myself as a servant of the people,” Mayor Darryl Grennell.
After three and half years of leading the city of Natchez Mayor Darryl Grennell surprised many when he announced he would be calling it quits in 7 months after his term is up.
“I received emails. I’ve received text messages. I received calls at City Hall. I was in church and people would say why aren’t you running again? It makes me feel proud to serve as a mayor of the city, that I made the people proud.”
The mayor says he is not being forced out and there is no drama behind his decision to leave. After 22 years of public service including serving as the president of the Adams County Board of Supervisors, he says it was just time to try something different.
“There’s a possibility that I will revert to my forte as an educator to teach again. I really enjoy changing lives. I spent 28 years as a professor at Alcorn State University and I worked in Louisiana in one of the poorest school districts in the United States,” said Mayor Grennell.
The mayor says another reason for leaving is he’s accomplished most the goals he set back in 2016 including at the police department.
Grenell says he hired a new chief, worked with the board of aldermen to get new technology and more money for police to fight crime.
“We were able to adjust salaries and the cured the shortage that we had. Our crime rate has dropped drastically. This year our crime rate has dropped 83 percent.”