Port Arthur chooses new mayor in runoff

Derrick Freeman

The results are in! Derrick Freeman edged out Harold Doucet in a runoff election June 25 to become the city of Port Arthur's next mayor.

Although Doucet finished ahead of Freeman on May 7, neither garnered the votes necessary for a clear victory. The results at the end of the runoff election June 25 showed Freeman winning the election with 51.21 percent of the vote to Doucet's 48.19 percent, or 1,693 votes to 1,613 votes.

Freeman was born and raised in Port Arthur, and was a Port Arthur city councilman from July 2011 to August 2015 when he resigned after announcing his candidacy for mayor. A 1994 graduate of Thomas Jefferson High School, Freeman had the political bug bite him early on. The student body president at TJ, Freeman left Port Arthur after graduation to attend Liberty University in Richmond, Virginia where he studied political science and played football. His first summer in college was spent as a congressional intern for then representative Steve Stockman. He later transferred to the University of Texas-El Paso and continued his pursuit of a political science degree before ultimately returning to Port Arthur.

Freeman previously worked as an on-air personality for Magic 102.5 FM before venturing out west at the age of 23 to launch a career in Los Angeles. He lived and worked there for eight years before returning to his hometown in 2008. Freeman, owner of Marketing Innovations and Network Development, a marketing business, hopes to see downtown revitalized and says he hopes to make positive changes in the city of Port Arthur.