ATLANTIC CITY — A city school teacher is challenging Kaleem Shabazz for his seat on City Council.
New York Avenue School teacher and former Villanova University quarterback Marvin Burroughs is a product of the city’s public school system.
“When I finished college, I made a choice to return home, to a place that has given me so much,” Burroughs said in a news release. “Each day in my classroom I see hope, I see opportunity. As a councilperson, I look forward to working with leaders across the city to ensure that the promises of our future here in Atlantic City remain bright.”
Shabazz currently represents the city’s 3rd Ward, which covers parts of the Ducktown, Westside and downtown neighborhoods. He was elected in 2015 with 81 percent of the primary vote and ran unopposed in the general election, according to Shabazz’s online biography.
Shabazz said he didn’t know he would have a primary challenger until Wednesday’s announcement.
“This is America, everyone has the right to run. And I don’t know the young man, but if he is interested in the civic welfare of Atlantic City and the betterment of the community, then that’s good,” Shabazz said, adding that Burroughs' entrance to the race doesn't change his campaign plans.
Burroughs, a father of two, was a standout athlete at Atlantic City High School, where he graduated in 2002. As a quarterback for the Vikings, he threw for more than 1,200 yards and 10 touchdowns his senior year. He also played basketball for the school.
He thinks his leadership on the field will translate well to local politics.
“On the football field, I was in a position to lead, and I take those skills with me each day into my classroom,” he said. “As a councilperson, I’ll leverage those same skills and relationships to open doors for all residents of Atlantic City.”