Kelly Girtz

Mayor Kelly Girtz

Mayor of Athens-Clarke County

2019 – present


“A new era of equity approaches.”
-Kelly Girtz, at his inauguration

Assistant Director for Student Services of Foothills Charter High School, formerly a teacher and administrator with Clarke County School District – W.R. Coile Middle School, Classic City High School (1998-2014)
Junior League of Athens Advisory Board
Commissioner of District 9 (2007-2018)

Master of Arts in Teaching, Piedmont College
Bachelor of Science in Sociology, Old Dominion University

Primary Ballots: Exclusively takes Democratic primary ballots.
Donations: Donated to John Edwards (D) in 2007.

Inferred Party: Democrat

Signature Policies

3-Point Plan for Affordable Housing: Girtz ran on plan for affordable housing during his 2018 campaign. It included a property tax freeze for low-income seniors, significant investment in affordable housing via SPLOST and by using Tax Allocation Districts (TADs) and pursuit of a policy of inclusionary zoning.

100% Renewable Energy: Girtz signed the Sierra Club Mayor’s 100% Clean Energy Pledge shortly after taking office in 2019. The commission soon followed with their own resolution in support of 100% clean energy.

Collaboration: In contrast to his predecessor, Mayor Nancy Denson, Girtz has committed to working in collaboration with both the commission and concerned residents alike. Items will no longer be blocked from the agenda against the wishes of a majority of commissioners.

Voting Record

Approve Apartments Near Airport: NO
Approve Apartments off Lexington Road: YES
Approve Official Homeless Camp: YES

The mayor votes only to break commission ties.
(More information about 2021 votes)

Fund Cedar Creek Solar Array: YES
Move Work Sessions to City Hall: YES
Redesign the Chase Street Corridor: YES
Update County Anti-Discrimination Policy: YES
Reject Concept Maps for Athens in Motion: NO
Adopt the Athens in Motion plan: YES
Protected Bike Lanes for Barnett Shoals: YES
Delay the Designation of SPLOST Projects: NO
(More information about 2018 votes)

Temporary Halt to Downtown Development: YES
Consultant Selection for Bike / Ped Master Plan: YES
TSPLOST project list and referendum: YES
Re-zoning Mitchell Street: NO
(More information about 2017 votes)

“Road Diet” for Chase Street: YES
Allow Sale of Growlers in Brewpubs: absent
Fare-Free Bus Rides for K-12 Students: YES
Downtown Anti-Discrimination Ordinance and Civil Rights Committee: abstain
(More information about 2016 votes)

Allow Backyard Chickens: YES
Remove Wetland Buffers: NO
Award Jail Phone Contract to Securus Tech: absent
Allow Food Trucks: YES
Keep Domestic Partnership Benefits: YES
(More information about 2015 votes)

Election Results

2018 Local Election

Kelly Girtz – 60.2%
Harry Sims – 30.3%
Richie Knight — 9.2%