Mayor Steve Schewel announced Thursday that he will not seek a third term.
Saying that he had “struggled mightily with this decision,” he told a news conference that he is ready to focus on family and some new priorities.
He said he’s also “looking forward to having dinner with my wife every night.”
Schewel was first elected mayor in 2017 and won reelection in 2019. He had previously served six years on the City Council. In his campaigns for mayor, he has promised to focus on affordable housing, livable wages, equitable transit systems, police reform and LGBTQ rights.
He is probably best known for leading the city and county’s aggressive response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Durham became the first municipality in North Carolina to adopt a stay-at-home order and mask mandate.
Schewel is the founder of Indy Week and has taught in the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University.
He said he’s loved his time as mayor. “I’ve been very very lucky in my life. I’ve been able to do a lot of things that I’ve enjoyed, and nothing that I’ve enjoyed as much as this.”
Schewel was asked if he had any advice for his successor. He said, “Durham is a rough and tumble political town, and you’ve really got to be able to roll with it.”
This story will be updated.
Photo at top: Steve Schewel announces he won’t seek reelection in front of City Hall. Photo by Nicole Kagan | The 9th Street Journal