UPDATE (6:00 PM) — His friends say they are excited the opportunity is here and hope he can move Monroe forward in the future.
“Friday Ellis…..um, I met him seven years ago. But in the seven years that I’ve known Friday, He is one of the most unusual, great men that I’ve known in my life,” said Bob Allen, Customer of Ellis’ shop.
Ellis’ friends say he is huge help to the small businesses in Monroe.
“He is very involved in the city in what’s going on and what he wants to see happen here in Monroe. And I think he’s a great candidate,” said Don Nance, Customer of Ellis’ shop.
Although many people think Ellis would be a good choice, there’s still those are loyal to Mayor Mayo.
“I think he’s done a good thing for the south side of the community. He’s helped a lot as far as schools, the roads, everything, it’s just the increase,” said Shenika White, Monroe Resident.
His supporters just want to see Monroe continue to improve.
“I just hope Mayo gets elected again as our mayor cause he’s been doing a good job for so long,” said Antonio Stewart, Monroe Resident.
Mayor Mayo says Ellis’ announcement doesn’t come as a surprise and he respects anyone who wants to seek public office.
MONROE, La. (Press Release) – (11/20/19) A local Monroe business owner has made an official announcement in his candidacy for the Mayor of Monroe. Friday Ellis made the announcement in an official press release yesterday (11/19).
The official statement can be read below:
Monroe resident and business owner Friday Ellis announces his candidacy for Mayor for the City of Monroe. Ellis, who is a local small business owner and real estate investor, will challenge incumbent Jamie Mayo in next April’s election.
Ellis worked for five years in the City’s Engineering Department as a Project Manager and is a veteran who served in the United States Marine Corps. He has been a vocal proponent of expanding opportunities for small business growth and an advocate for developing specific plans to put the city on an aggressive improvement track.
“Our city is at an important crossroads. Do we continue down the path that led us here, or do we work for new leadership? I believe that our community needs a revival — an economic revival, a quality of life revival, and a spiritual revival — for us to achieve our full potential,” said Ellis. “We need a mayor that will work to unify our city, bring people together, and reach across racial, political and parish lines to bring our region, city and community together.”
Two of our most critical issues, crime and flooding, are growing concerns. We must refocus our efforts to actively secure the funding and support we need to attract industry, train the best workforce, retain our local businesses, and begin improving our roads, lighting, technology and other infrastructure,” Ellis said.
Ellis has been a visible figure locally in supporting entrepreneurship, building relationships, and bringing fresh ideas for improving Monroe’s business ecosystem. “Friday Ellis has demonstrated the ability and willingness to work constructively with others, regardless of where they live in Monroe, through accountability and transparency to bring a solutions-based approach to solving problems. He enlisted in the Marine Corps immediately following the destruction of the Twin Towers on 911, so that he could go where he was needed most. Monroe needs him and his courageous leadership now,” said Monroe City Councilman Michael Echols.
Ellis operates a Monroe-based business in Monroe’s Garden District, that also produces their own line of cigars in Nicaragua that are sold globally. Ellis says the relationships built as a small business owner, experience as a project manager for the City, and service in the Marines Corps, has given him critical insight into the prioritization and process gaps that are holding Monroe back from achieving its full potential.
Community and civic involvement at the local and state levels have also been priorities for Ellis. Earlier this year, Ellis was named the Louisiana Business and Industry (LABI) 2019 Free Enterprise Champion for the state. He is also a member of the Monroe Chamber of Commerce, Louisiana Catalyst Incubator (Board Member) and a 2019 Graduate of the Leadership Louisiana program coordinated by the Council for a Better Louisiana (CABL).