Baltimore communicator T.J. Smith announced he is running for mayor of Baltimore.

Most recently, he served as Press Secretary for Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski, Jr. and previously was chief spokesperson and communications advisor for the Baltimore Police Department, the nation’s eighth largest municipal police agency.

Smith is considered an expert in crisis communications and has has nearly 20 years of law enforcement experience, beginning as a sworn officer with the Anne Arundel County (Maryland) Police Department. He worked primarily in police and community units and later transitioned to communications.

He holds a master’s degree in management from Johns Hopkins University and a master’s degree in strategic communication from Washington State University.

Smith offered the following statement on his campaign website:

I’ve spent my life loving the City of Baltimore. From attending our city schools, to cheering on the Ravens and Orioles, to the work I’ve done with Moms Demand Action before and after the shooting death of my brother. Nothing matters more to me than the safety and vitality of our communities and the future of our children – including my own son. I want to take everything I’ve learned throughout my career, both in and outside of our city, to finally change things for the better.

Also in the running as Democrats are 12 other candidates, including Mayor Jack Young and Baltimore City Council President Brandon Scott. The primary election will be held on April 28, 2020.

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