Save Davidson is proud to endorse the following candidates for the offices of Mayor and Town Commissioner. These candidates ensure a change in town hall, are best suited to serve the entire town, and exemplify values that are most closely aligned with the core mission of Save Davidson. Together, these candidates bring experience, values, and balanced representation across town. We believe these candidates will best provide solutions to:


10/28 Early voting begins (Cornelius Town Hall)

10/31 Last day to request absentee ballot (5:00 p.m.)

11/04 Early voting ends

11/07 Last day to return absentee ballot (5:00 p.m.)

6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Davidson Town Hall or Hopewell Baptist Church depending on
precinct assignment
Control high density development

Solve traffic problems

Ensure government transparency

Restore fiscal responsibility

Preserve small-town values

My goals in running for mayor are simple. Davidson needs a pause button. We have to take a hard look at our infrastructure, engage the Department of Transportation and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, and look at the immediate and future needs of Davidson. Our town needs to become less reliant on a residential tax base and more proactive by building a commercial tax base to ease the financial burden on residents. Our land use plan and ordinances need to be inline with the core values of Davidson characteristically being a small town. We must work on an exit strategy with Mooresville to stop the budgetary losses we share due to MI Connection (Continuum). We need Davidson to rally around itself and become more inclusive of all citizens who make our town special. As mayor, I will work to build relationships with neighboring towns, the county, the Lake Norman Chamber of Commerce, Davidson College, and local industry, because working together offers better opportunities for positive results. Finally, I will work diligently to promote full transparency and accountability at Town Hall, because citizen input should carry weight in the process of shaping the future of Davidson. We are fortunate to have an abundance of talented citizens who should be encouraged to help shape our future. My agenda is simple. It's Davidson. Our hometown.

I have also been endorsed by the I77 Business Plan due to my involvement and believe in their model for fiscally responsible transportation solutions for local businesses, implementation of expanding local infrastructure solutions, and providing better solutions for transportation. Email Rusty

Davidson’s history as a small college town has always been central to its character. It provided me and many others with an enriched childhood. It has served countless students with a unique and intimate collegiate experience and today provides a pleasant refuge from an otherwise sprawling region. I’m a life-long resident of the area, and after returning from UNC Chapel Hill, my wife and I made Davidson our home in 2003. We have two small children, 20 months and 9 weeks old - as of today. I’m the Co-founder and President of CLN Worldwide, an International Logistics Firm based in Charlotte with facilities across the Southeast and partners around the world.  

Growth and Development – Have historically been the primary challenge for Davidson. Located 20 miles from Charlotte and with a western border to Lake Norman, Davidson has faced consistent development pressure since the 90’s. Growth in Davidson must be managed in a way that retains and reflects our character as a historic small college town.  

Gentrification – Davidson has a long history of protecting and advocating for our diverse communities. Davidson College students led protests in the 50’s and 60’s to force integration of businesses on Main Street. Today, as much as ever, our diverse communities are at risk of being displaced by encroaching development. If we do not take immediate and decisive action to protect these communities, we will lose them.  

Traffic and Congestion – Davidson’s infrastructure to date is unable to support either the local traffic or the transiting regional traffic. This is in part due to the geographic constraints of Davidson between the college to the east and Lake Norman to the west and partly because of regional growth. Davidson will have to take a unique and comprehensive approach to address congestion issues. There are examples around the world of cities that have adopted creative solutions. We need to learn from these best practices.  

Transparent and Conflict Free Government – Governments should not only be open and transparent with their constituents about their actions and motives, but they should also actively engage the public in the decision-making process. In the past, Davidson successfully managed its growth and direction through the charrette process. Unfortunately, we have recently moved away from this approach, and the result has been a rapid acceleration in the pace of development and a diminishing quality of development.  It should go without saying that those in office should not profit from holding office.  Email David

Matthew, his wife, and 3 children have spent the last 6 years living in Davidson. They love to take walks on the Davidson College campus, ride bikes on the Green Way, attend Concerts on the Green, and shop the farmer’s market on Saturdays. Currently, he is a Sr. Director of Finance with Newell Brands and has held various positions over the course of his 14-year career with them. 
Matthew attended Le Moyne College and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and a Minor in Economics. Currently, Matthew sits on the board of the River Run Property Owner’s Association as the Committee Chair for Government Affairs. 

Key Issues: 
One of the biggest issues with politics today is a lack of trust & transparency in the decisions which are made.  A recent National Citizen’s Survey from Town Hall shows double-digit declines in Trust & Transparency. I will work to rebuild the bridge of trust between the town and its citizens.

Our growth is outpacing our infrastructure.  We have continued to grow without putting in place the proper improvements/expansions of roads, police, fire, etc. Over the past year of attending commissioner meetings and coffee chats and listening to citizens, it has become clear to me that the current pace of growth is a major issue facing our town.

Today MI-Connection is a financial drain on our budget. In my current role as Senior Director of Finance, I was the project lead for the sale of our businesses.  I believe that with my experience in divestitures, I am the right person to take the lead in getting our town out of MI-Connection.  Email Matthew

Shana has lived in Davidson for 6 years. She is a concerned citizen, mother and businesswoman. She graduated with a BA in English from Boston College and was an active marketing professional for 20+ years.  Shana has relevant experience in strategic planning, budgeting and communications. She has 2 children, ages 11 and 13, attending Bailey Middle and has been married to Karl Erber for 18 years. Shana lives in the McConnell neighborhood and has the time and energy to commit to this important public service role. She has been motivated to run for commissioner due to concerns over the decisions the current town government has made. She promises to seek information pertinent to a particular issue and thoughtfully and judiciously make decisions/recommendations/votes. Shana has excellent judgement and does not have any current business conflicts. She is extremely reasonable and understands how to make decisions based on facts and that will support, preserve and enhance our amazing and unique town. Shana has a passion and appreciation for the Town of Davidson and hopes to unify this community for a bright future.  ​​​​​​​​ Email Shana

Autumn is a native of nearby Salisbury, NC, but has lived in Davidson for nearly 12 years.  She serves as the Executive Director of the Davidson Lands Conservancy, and is also an adjunct professor teaching historic preservation law at both the University of Pennsylvania and UNC Greensboro.  Autumn has a BA in Political Science from UNC Chapel Hill, a JD from the University of Georgia School of Law, and a Master of Historic Preservation, also from the University of Georgia.  Prior to moving to Davidson, Autumn had extensive experience in historic preservation, first as an attorney for the National Trust for Historic Preservation in Washington, DC, then as Director of the Western Regional Office of Preservation NC, and as Executive Director of Historic Charlotte. 
Her professional experience in both preservation and conservation are particularly relevant as Davidson experiences a period of unprecedented growth.  Autumn has been active in Davidson civic affairs, including service on the Davidson Lands Conservancy Board of Directors, the Davidson Planning Board from 2007-2012, and as a volunteer for her children's schools and her church (Davidson College Presbyterian Church).  She and her husband, Jeff, have 4 children, who attend Davidson Elementary and J.M. Alexander Middle schools.
Email Autumn

Together, Jim believes our town can address difficult growth issues, restrain our current debt concerns, and solve the lingering issue of MI-Connection. Equally strongly, Jim supports protection of our tree canopy & the environment, walkability, greenways, affordable housing, and working to insure that our veterans and lower income residents are full partners in our decisions and in enjoying our town. Jim’s campaign commitment is a straightforward pledge to work with everyone in this community to make Davidson the very best small town in our region and state. That’s a concomitant commitment—“best” and “small” since Jim believes fervently in our town’s core Value #5. Jim believes in candor and transparency in both personal and town communications, and he is a fiscal conservative with taxpayer dollars. Jim believes that one of the primary roles of an elected leader is to listen thoughtfully and to give great weight to the 
views of ALL the people in the town. Email Jim

I have lived in Lake Norman for the past 14 years, the last two as a Davidson resident. For nearly a decade, my wife and I aspired to move to this beautiful small town. But Davidson is at a crossroads, and its small town charm is in jeopardy. I am running to protect the Davidson we fell in love with. I want to use slow, smart growth strategies while maintaining the small town feel. We must look to improve maxed out infrastructure that has not kept up with population growth. I want to reunite a town that feels divided by providing the citizens with open and transparent government by and for the people. I am against high-density housing. I am against a new town hall. I am against violating the town’s core values. As I heard a resident say at a Town Board meeting, I am for keeping Davidson a small, college- town and not a town with a small college. Email Ryan​

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