It’s official: Charlie Diradour is running for City Council.
The local real estate developer and longtime political adviser officially filed his “statement of organization” with the city registrar’s office this morning to run as a candidate in the 2nd District.
Diradour will likely challenge incumbent Charles Samuels, who is expected to run for reelection but has yet to officially announce his intentions.
Long a behind-the-curtains adviser -- he’s worked on mostly local campaigns, including Mary Sue Terry’s successful run for state attorney general in 1985 and former 2nd District Councilman Bill Pantele’s unsuccessful bid for mayor in 2008 -- Diradour briefly challenged U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor, R-7th, in 2009.
A developer who specializes in retail and restaurants -- his Fan properties include Buddy’s Place, Kuba Kuba and DeLux Diner -- Diradour became a vocal opponent of plans to build a new ballpark in Shockoe Bottom in 2008, publicly pushing to build a new stadium on the Boulevard, near The Diamond.
“I’m running because I’ve looked at City Council now for many years, and I am not seeing the focus on local issues that are important. Council has taken a much more global approach to governing than is necessary,” Diradour says. “I am going to focus on the needs of the people.”
During his run against Cantor in September 2009, Diradour stumbled out of the gate. A week after announcing his candidacy, he publicly retracted statements that Cantor was tweeting about his TV interview schedule during President Obama’s health care speech before Congress (he wasn’t) and had to deal with news reports that he didn’t live in the 7th District. A month later, he withdrew from the race.
Born in Richmond, Diradour, 48, says he’s lived in and around the Fan most of his life and currently serves as vice president of the Fan District Association. His wife, Ann, is a neurosurgeon at VCU Medical Center.