Mayor: Lydia Lavelle (inc.)

Confidence Level: High

Other Candidates: N/A

Lydia Lavelle was elected Carrboro’s mayor in 2013, and Lydia Lavelle will likely be Carrboro’s mayor until she decides she no longer wants to be. There’s a reason no one is running against her. The N.C. Central law professor is as good a representative for the town’s progressive, inclusive values as you could find. She has two priorities for her fourth term: revamping the town’s comprehensive plan and rebooting the 203 Project, an initiative with Orange County that will house the Orange County Southern Library. (The project was dealt a blow earlier this year when The ArtsCenter bailed.) Lavelle also demonstrates an uncommon self-awareness for a public official, volunteering that the Board of Aldermen should do a better job of giving direction to the town’s staff. Perhaps this is easy to do when you don’t have an opponent, but it’s a character trait we value nonetheless. Carrboro is in good hands with her at the helm.

Board of Aldermen: Susan Romaine, Damon Seils (inc.), Sammy Slade (inc.)

Confidence Level: Medium to high

Other Candidates: Matt Clements, Steve Friedman, Matt Neal

In this election, voters pick three aldermen from six candidates. Two of these choices are easy: Incumbents Damon Seils and Sammy Slade deserve re-election. 

The third slot presents a more difficult decision. Susan Romaine and Steve Friedman have qualities and stake out positions we like. They both speak to the need to increase density and diversify Carrboro’s housing stock, something the town needs to do. Friedman has good ideas, too, about growing the town’s tax base and remaining attractive to businesses. Either would make a fine alderman. 

But we’re siding with Romaine because we admire her work as a founder of PORCH and the Orange County Living Wage Project, and because we believe her experience will enable her to find practical solutions to difficult problems. 

Comment on these endorsements at 

Support independent local journalism. Join the INDY Press Club to help us keep fearless watchdog reporting and essential arts and culture coverage viable in the Triangle.