Incumbent City Council member Brandi Gabbard will retain her District 2 seat after challenger Kyle Hall withdrew from the race, leaving her unopposed.
Hall filed his campaign withdrawal letter Sept. 14, according to city election filings. Hall was Gabbard’s only opponent in the District 2 race, automatically advancing both candidates to the General Election run-off. With Hall’s withdrawal, Gabbard no longer has an opponent, handing her automatic reelection.
“I am immensely grateful that I can continue to be a voice for St. Pete values, and a fighter for the quality of life that has inspired all of us to make this city our home,” Gabbard said in a video posted to her campaign Facebook.
“As we look forward. I promise to continue working every day on the issues that matter to you, from affordable housing to supporting small businesses, and investment in infrastructure to build climate resilient neighborhoods,” she continued. “I will work to find solutions that will lift up all St. Pete residents and ensure that we have a thriving and equitable future.”
The Democratic incumbent led the race in fundraising, with Hall getting a late start. Gabbard has raised a total of $37,912 since launching her campaign. Hall has yet to put out a finance report after filing to run in May, consistently filing report waivers indicating he hadn’t raised any funds.
Gabbard will be hosting a victory celebration at 6 p.m. Oct. 12 at the Cordova Inn.
Gabbard was first elected to the City Council in 2017. Democrats currently have a 6-2 majority on the dais, with the only Republicans serving being Ed Montanari and Robert Blackmon, who is running for Mayor.
Gabbard previously endorsed Montanari in his 2019 election, and she often winds up on the same side of issues, typically on issues of property rights. Gabbard is a Realtor by trade.
Gabbard has worked for Smith and Associates Real Estate for 14 years, and she was named Pinellas County Realtor of the Year in 2015. She moved to St. Pete in 2003 from Indiana.
The district covers parts of northeast St. Pete.
Gabbard will be sworn in for her second term at the first City Council meeting in 2022.