Michael Ztykow, a former Occupy Charlotte leader, on City Council ballot
Posted on 25 Sep 2013 by Justin Ruckman
I spoke to Michael at (some) length back during the peak of OWS. He was a rational, even-tempered advocate of the movements’ causes, numerous as they were. He seemed equally at home with those occupying the lawn by the old Town Hall as with the passersby trying to make sense of it from the outside.
If nothing else, you have to admit that an ability to bridge divides is a quality both valuable and scarce among politicians these days.
Michael Zytkow has done something that apparently nobody else has ever done: successfully petition to get on the Charlotte City Council ballot.
Mecklenburg elections officials said Tuesday that Zytkow, a former leader of the Occupy Charlotte movement, reached the threshold of 3,063 petition signatures.
Zytkow, 27, plans to pay his filing fee Wednesday at the board of elections to run as an independent.
“I’m incredibly appreciative to all the people who helped us get here and break through that barrier,” he said. “But part of the campaign is drawing attention to the fact that these restrictions should not be in place.”
Zytkow is running in District 4 in northeast Charlotte. His opponent will be decided in an Oct. 8 Democratic runoff between Gregg Phipps and Wil Russell.
Phipps fell two votes short of winning the primary outright. No Republican is running.
A Wake Forest University graduate, Zytkow taught at Garinger High School as part of the Teach for America program. Last year he was a spokesman for the Occupy Charlotte protest.