Meet the Candidates: Henry Davis Jr., South Bend Mayor


Our great city is at a crossroads. After four years of rising crime rates, financial mismanagement, and unaccountable leadership, we need new leadership to grow and invest in our neighborhoods. That’s why I’m running for Mayor of South Bend.

I am a native son of South Bend. After graduating from Earlham College, I moved back to my hometown to raise my family here. For five years, I mentored and supported underserved youth and families before winning a seat in City Council, where I’ve served South Bend’s 2nd District for the past seven years. As Councilman, I’ve fought to bring good jobs, transparent government, and responsible financial management to City Hall. But I’ve also seen firsthand how the current mayor has turned his back on working families.

Under the failed leadership of the current administration, the murder rate has doubled. Our police force has been divided and demoralized, and community trust in police is eroding. The mayor and his well-connected donors seek to plunder our natural resources and public dollars with reckless privatization schemes. Much-needed public transit routes have shuttered, great regional landmarks remain abandoned, and our community is sinking under the weight of South Bend’s ballooning municipal debt.

This is no way to grow a city.

It’s time for new leadership. We need a mayor who will put our families first, not campaign donors. My platform is simple: as your mayor, I’ll work tirelessly to grow our city, fight crime, and create a City Hall that you can trust.

1) Grow our city.

We deserve a mayor who will fight for a thriving, beautiful, and affordable South Bend for all. As mayor, I will work with all stakeholders on a comprehensive “South Bend Future” initiative that plans for the long-term viability of our neighborhoods, maximizing equity and accountability across the board. This includes a thorough review of the sewer overflow plan, the most expensive infrastructure project in our history.

2) Put our safety first.

The current administration has recklessly sent armored tanks into our neighborhoods and overpaid outsiders to take over for our top brass. I will revitalize community policing, bring greater accountability and civilian review to the force, and diversify the ranks of our force and police leadership. These are the proven, homegrown solutions our communities need.

3) Restore trust and transparency to City Hall.

As your mayor, I’ll work to restore trust at every level of city government, from opening the city’s books to bringing greater accountability and civilian review to the police force. I won’t outsource the most critical decisions about the future of South Bend to outside consultants. I’ll prioritize inclusive, transparent decision-making and promotion structures that keep South Bend’s best and brightest at the table.

When you head to the polls on Tuesday, remember what’s at stake. We deserve better than violence, neglect, and mismanagement. I know South Bend, I love South Bend, and I’ve dedicated my life to making our city the safe and prosperous community we deserve. I hope to earn your vote.

Meet the Candidates is a series introducing candidates in their own words. Articles are posted verbatim. South Bend Voice will publish articles for all South Bend office seekers who are on the May 5th primary ballot.

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