By Maria Rachal

Lexington’s two candidates for mayor will publicly debate for the first time on tonight.

Frank Friedman and Charles “Chuck” Smith, both current members of the Lexington City Council, are each vying to succeed Lexington’s mayor of eight years, Mimi Elrod.

Candidate Frank Friedman

The contenders will face off at 7:30 p.m. on the campus of Washington and Lee University’s School of Law in the Millhiser Moot Court Room in Lewis Hall.

The debate is sponsored by the W&L departments of Journalism and Mass Communications and Politics and will feature questions from state and local government students. Assistant Professor Kevin Finch will serve as moderator.

Candidate Chuck Smith

The event is free and open to the public but seating is limited. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m.

Friedman currently serves as vice president and financial advisor at CornerStone Bank. He grew up in Lexington and has worked in the area since returning in 1997.

Smith moved to Lexington in 1991 and founded Washington Street Purveyors in 1996. He has taught science at Lylburn Downing Middle School since 2015.

Community members will have a second chance to hear from Friedman and Smith two weeks later at a candidates’ forum hosted by the Government Relations Committee of the local Chamber of Commerce. The moderated question and answer event will also feature candidates for the city and town councils of Lexington, Buena Vista, Goshen, and Glasgow.

The forum will be held Oct. 25 at 6 p.m. at the Hampton Inn Col Alto.

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