After 20 years as a Charlotte politician, James “Smuggie” Mitchell is leaving his job on the city council. Mitchell resigned to take on a new role running a Black business. His resignation as Charlotte city at-large councilman went into effect 5 p.m. Monday, January 11.
Mitchell will be co-owner and president of RJ Leeper Construction. According to Mitchell, the black-owned business is part of a new company – Bright Hope Capital, LLC. Mitchell says the owners of Bright Hope are focused on acquiring and empowering African American businesses.
Mitchell says it was a great situation and a perfect fit, telling WBTV that the owner of RJ Leeper Construction (Ron Leeper) is a father figure to him. And he says he’s excited to focus on Black businesses and helping them build generational wealth.
As for some of his goals for the company he’ll run, Mitchell says he wants to grow the company and hire more people. And that his number one priority is safety and making sure his employees know he cares about them.
Someone will fill Mitchell’s council seat until December.
Full story with @AlisonKuznitz on city council member James "Smuggie" Mitchell's retirement, which comes after his new role at a construction company that works with the city has stirred controversy. Mitchell served on council for two decades.https://t.co/nBKazkAtjv— Danielle Chemtob (@daniellechemtob) January 11, 2021