Mayoral hopeful Delegate Dwight C. Jones has taken on a fundraising heavy-hitter to pull money into his campaign.
Matthew Felan serves as executive director of Gov. Tim Kaine's Moving Virginia Forward PAC and as a deputy finance director on Sen. Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. While working for Kaine during the 2005 election, he helped raise $23.3 million statewide, a staggering sum for a Democratic candidate at the time.
Most party operatives are tied up in Clinton, Sen. Barack Obama or Mark Warner's campaign and their crisscrossing allegiances prevent them from discussing Felan's fundraising prowess publicly, but "dynamo" and "superstar" were among the off-the-record adjectives offered up.
State Sen. Donald McEachin, D-Henrico, says a big league staffer is a good start, but it isn't everything.
"I think it means that Delegate Jones is serious about raising money," McEachin says, but warns that a shoe-leather campaign still counts. "He's done this long enough to know that regardless who he hires it's going to take a lot of work from him."
So far, Jones shares the official field with Paul Goldman, longtime aide to Mayor L. Douglas Wilder, architect Lawrence Williams and Donnie "Dirtwoman" Corker. Mayor Wilder has yet to announce whether he plans to seek a second term.
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