Franklin City Council Ward 3 write-in candidate Q&A: Charlie Ashburn Jr.

Published 6:40 pm Tuesday, October 25, 2022

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Franklin City Council Ward 3 write-in candidate

Name: Charlie Ashburn Jr.

Age: 60

Family: Wife, Raystine Johnson Ashburn

Education: Franklin High School, Associates degree in Criminal Justice – Camp Community College

Career: Business owner and operator of Ashburn Auto Service

Why do you want to be elected as a member of the Franklin City Council?

I grew up in Franklin, my mother and father also grew up in Franklin. They raised me with values. I have a vision — if we work together, we all benefit. These benefits open doors for opportunity for growth in OUR community. As a business owner and by running for the Franklin City Council, I will strive to create better resources that benefit all citizens.

What would you list as your primary qualifications for being a city council member?

I am a registered voter, a product of Franklin City Public School System, and I have worked in this community for most of my life. I have a strong belief and faith in God. Because of my beliefs, I strongly feel that I have a lot to give back to this community by serving on city council.

What do you think are the city of Franklin’s greatest strengths?

We are a small community that is situated for positive growth, enhanced educational opportunities and we are socially connected, in many ways, with one another. We can work together to strengthen our community.

What do you think are the greatest challenges facing the city of Franklin?

Always an economic challenge. In this period of post-COVID, we are challenged with recovery and growing our workforce to meet the needs of job demands. New businesses will be opening in the City of Franklin, Southampton County and the City of Suffolk that will place an even greater need for the development of a stronger workforce. So, for our high school and community college citizens, we must strengthen our resources that we are fortunate to already have in place. Our healthcare facilities will continue to face keeping our families well. We must continue to build a strong partnership with the Franklin Police Department to focus on the safety of our citizens. These factors and more will be my focus when elected to the Franklin City Council.

If elected, what will be your leading priorities as a council member?

To keep the community fiscally sound by growing business opportunities to enhance the quality of life for our citizens. I would like to reach out to some males in our community that need special skills to assist them in getting jobs that will make them self-sufficient.

How would you support fostering a relationship with the City Council and the Franklin City School Board?

There is a common bond between the City Council and the School Board in Franklin, Virginia. All of us want to see our children do well in school, so my answer is simple, let’s get the City Council, School Board and the Parents to focus on the education of our students. Parental involvement is so important. Working together, our children will be happier, our teachers will be less stressed and the City Council will know that our citizens are receiving the best education for their investment in our educational system.

What, if any, key improvements do you think need to be made to the city’s public education system, and if elected, what will you do to ensure those needed key improvements are made?

Retain a good superintendent with great leadership skills. Implement high standards and set high expectations as it relates to our teachers. Offer a competitive salary for our educators. Involve parents in their children’s education and build a “school community” that everyone can be proud of. As a member of the Franklin City Council, I will hold the School Board accountable for making our schools better.