Millennials hanging outside of Le Diplomate

When Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans launches his mayoral campaign Saturday in front of Le Diplomate, the tony new French bistro on 14th Street NW, Washington will have three declared candidates for next year’s mayoral contest. Highlighting Logan Circle’s growth over the course of Evans’ 22 years as its councilmember, the backdrop isn’t a surprising choice. Neither was Muriel Bowser’s decision to kick off her campaign in front of her childhood home, much like her political benefactor Adrian Fenty did at the start of his successful 2006 run.

Of the current declared candidates, Ward 6 Councilmember Tommy Wells may have packed the most symbolism into his launch at the intersection of Bladensburg Road and H Street NE. The campaign announcement took place near the convergence of Ward 6—whose H Street corridor has seen economic growth during Wells’ years in office—and wards 5 and 7, to whose poorer residents Wells will have to make an appeal. Setting his kickoff by the tracks of the streetcar Wells championed was no accident, either.

Is there a best way to launch a campaign? A look at the last several mayoral cycles reveals no clear path. Churches are popular, but so are campaign headquarters and high schools. In a pinch, of course, a street corner will do.


Marion Barry*
May 21, 1994
Coolidge High School
6315 5th St. NW

Sharon Pratt Kelly
June 11, 1994
Lincoln Theatre
1215 U St. NW

John Ray
May 21, 1994
McKinley Senior High School
151 T St. NE


Anthony Williams*
June 1, 1998
Lutheran Church of the Holy Comforter
3319 Alabama Ave. SE

Kevin P. Chavous

Jan. 25, 1998
Allen Chapel AME Church
2498 Alabama Ave SE.

Jack Evans
May 30, 1998
Kennedy Playground
1401 7th St. NW

Harold Brazil

Mar. 17, 1998

Office of Campaign Finance


Anthony Williams*
June 22, 2002
Campaign headquarters
7th Street and
New York Avenue NW

Willie Wilson
Aug. 12, 2002
D.C. General Hospital
1900 Massachusetts Ave. SE


Linda Cropp
Sept. 7, 2005
14th and U streets NW

Adrian Fenty*
June 1, 2005
Childhood home
Mount Pleasant


Adrian Fenty
April 10, 2010
Campaign headquarters at Georgia and Missouri avenues NW

Vince Gray*
March 30, 2010
Frank D. Reeves Center
2000 14th St. NW


Muriel Bowser
March 23, 2013
Childhood home

Tommy Wells
May 18, 2013
Starburst Plaza
H Street and
Bladensburg Road NE

Jack Evans
June 8, 2013
Near Le Diplomate
14th and Q streets NW


Photo by Jessica Sidman