John Uhrin among 5 finalists considered for appointment to VB Beach Council seat

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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — The Virginia Beach City Council has narrowed down the list of potential appointees to fill the vacant Beach District seat. 

On Tuesday, the city’s nine remaining council members narrowed down a list of 14 applicants to “five most highly qualified for interviews,” according to a city release. 

The five are:

  • Leah Malbon Davenport, Deputy Department Head/Supervisory Attorney, United States Navy
  • Megin Kennett, Client Solutions Executive, AT&T
  • Louisa Strayhorn, Chief Executive Officer, LSA Consulting, Inc.
  • Guy King Tower, retired attorney, mediator, educator and association executive
  • John E Uhrin, Director of Operations, Burlage Management Corporation.

The candidates’ applications will be made public on Wednesday for all to see before a public hearing on April 16 in Council Chambers.

Public interviews of the finalists, as well as an appointment, will occur on April 23.

John Uhrin held the Beach District seat for 12 years, before losing the seat to David Nygaard by less than 200 votes in November 2018. 

Uhrin contested the election, claiming Nygaard didn’t live in the Beach District when he decided to run, making him an ineligible candidate. In March 2018, a panel of 3 judges voided the election and removed Nygaard from office

“I felt vindicated and I felt grateful for the judge’s ruling,” said Uhrin following the decision. 

Nygaard originally requested to be appointed to the seat, over the weekend he announced he would not be looking to rejoin council.  

Uhrin isn’t the only name familiar to city government. 

Louisa Strayhorn also has served on council before. She represented what was known as the “Kempsville Borough” from 1994-1998.

While Leah Malbon Davenport hasn’t served on City Council herself, her brother Ben Davenport recently left council after serving four years as an At-Large Councilmember. He lost his mayoral bid to Bobby Dyer in 2018. 

Whoever is chosen will hold the seat temporarily. The city council voted last month to request a special election to be held on November 5, allowing for voters to decide who will fill out the remaining term in the Beach District.

This is one of two vacancies on the council. Shannon Kane resigned from the Rose Hall district seat last week, announcing she would be moving out of the district. 

Applications for those interested in filling the seat are due April 22nd, with a finalist list being revealed April 23rd. 

Public comment will be held on April 30th, with interviews and an appointment being made on May 7th. 

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Correction: An earlier version of this article stated that John Uhrin was the only former council member considered. This was incorrect. WAVY.com regrets the error. 

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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