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India Walton announces run for Masten district Common Council seat

India Walton headshot
Alana Adetola Arts Photography

India Walton is back.

The former Buffalo mayoral candidate announced she is running for the Masten district Common Council seat currently held by Ulysees Wingo Sr.

Walton gained fame by winning the Democratic primary for mayor before losing to incumbent Byron Brown.

“I've gone through a lengthy process over the last year and a half of professional development, of mentorship, and of executive coaching, that has really redefined who I am as a person,” she said of her times away from politics. “And as a politician or a person involved in politics, that has opened my eyes to ways that I'm able to work in collaboration with people currently sitting in office, and also really focusing more on issues as opposed to identity.”

But why Masten district?

“I have always been in service of my community, and my community are people who primarily look like me. Black people, people who grew up impoverished, and people who have been disenfranchised, and pretty much ignored by our government and establishment politicians in the city of Buffalo,” she said. “Masten has a high percentage of renters. We don't have as many vacant lots as other parts. On the east side. However, there's very good potential to build infill housing, to improve the quality of the existing housing stock, and to also provide opportunities for home ownership. I've just seen many opportunities to continue to improve upon the work that's already been laid by the very robust black club, and community based and faith-based organizations that have been doing the work for so long in this district. And I believe that the people of Masten deserve a council person that is going to work in collaboration with them, and make sure that we're getting the resources to the ground level where they're so desperately needed to make sure that people have thriving and healthy, safe life.”

With a win, Walton would be the first woman to serve on the council since Bonnie Russell in 2014.

“I am the best person for this job,” she said regarding who may run against her. “I believe that bringing a feminine voice to the city council and focusing on social support and really embedding myself in this community, talking to constituents directly and at the neighborhood level is going to be a big step forward to bringing Masten into where it really has the potential to be, which is one of the best districts in this in the city.”

Walton says Masten’s problems reflect problems that are city-wide, but much like the city, the potential is there.

Born in Louisville, Kentucky, Thomas moved to Western New York at the age of 14. A graduate of Buffalo State College, he majored in Communications Studies and was part of the sports staff for WBNY. When not following his beloved University of Kentucky Wildcats and Boston Red Sox, Thomas enjoys coaching youth basketball, reading Tolkien novels and seeing live music.
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