Frederick County executive candidate Kathy Afzali displayed fundraising prowess in the final months of 2017, outpacing her rivals in the race for the GOP nomination and cementing her place as the perceived frontrunner in the race to oust incumbent Jan Gardner (D).
Afzali, a member of the House of Delegates, reported raising $78,000 in the past year, including $20,000 of her own money. Combined with prior cash on hand and taking into account expenses of $22,450, she had $102,000 in the bank as of last week.
County Councilman and construction executive Kirby Delauter (R) raised $60,452 but spent most of it ($46,448), leaving him just $13,604 cash on hand.
Regina Williams, Frederick County’s former budget officer, raised $35,905, but she too had a hefty “burn” rate. She reported just $11,335 in the bank.
Gardner, who is not expected to face primary opposition, raised $59,000 and had $76,300 in the bank.
“I had to loan myself $10,000 for my first campaign, so I’ve come a long way,” Afzali told Maryland Matters. “We’ve received strong support.”
Williams said: “The hardest thing for me to do as a single mom who works full-time is to ask someone to donate their precious time or hard earned money for my cause, and I probably couldn’t do it if I didn’t believe in it so much.”
“I may not have the biggest bank account, but no candidate has more passion for Frederick County,” she added.
Delauter did not respond to a request for comment left on his Facebook page.
Afzali said she plans to stockpile cash for the end of the campaign. “People love to get nasty,” she said. “You need the resources to respond.”