AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Tonya Winston, an Amarillo citizen, recently announced her candidacy for the Amarillo Mayor position, stating that her goal is for the city to “make a U-turn to excellence.”

Winston officially filed for a place on the May 6 Election ballot on Wednesday and will join Freda Powell on the mayoral portion of the ballot. As of Jan. 19, Tom Scherlen and Hobert Gunny Brown have both filed for Place 3 and Place 4 on the May 6 ballot, respectively.

While Winston stressed that she is not a politician, she said she believes she is the person for the position.

“I am a citizen of Amarillo, Texas. I have a passion for my home, for my city. I love people and I know that in order for this city to move and be productive, we have to be involved,” Winston said. “You don’t have to be a politician to produce a productive city and have the mentality to be a politician. You can just be a good citizen with good wisdom and good ethics and morals.”

Winston said some of her priorities include establishing public service-centered mentoring programs for Amarillo children and the establishment of new businesses, increasing the city’s economy and having Amarillo children who grow up in Amarillo, stay in Amarillo.

But, the most important priority for Winston is safety and security, she said.

“Amarillo has been stagnant for some time now. The city of Amarillo is moving, but we’re moving slow,” she said. “My priorities are safety and security for the city of Amarillo. The children in our city, the entire city of Amarillo, need safety and security. The Amarillo Police Department is doing good, but however, we need a more diverse police department. We need people to get involved and come out and apply for positions for the Amarillo Police Department so that the Amarillo Police Department can be all that it can be.”

Overall, Winston said she believes she would bring a new perspective to City Hall if she is elected as Mayor.

“I’m the person for the seat. Sometimes you have to reanalyze, brainstorm. Sometimes you have to move the old and bring in some new,” she said. “Together, the city can make a U-turn to excellence, and it’s going to take the city, the people in the city, the citizens in the city, to make this city be productive.” 

According to previous reports, filing for a place on the May 2023 ballot is scheduled to end at 5 p.m. on Feb. 17. The last day for residents to register to vote in this election is April 6.