...because Fredericksburg has embraced me and my family with open arms and provided us with enormous opportunities, and I want to pay it forward. I want to bring my experience to City Council to keep that opportunity flowing for all the people of Fredericksburg.
Fredericksburg is a very special place. A small town with big town energy. Amazingly historic but full of modern vibes. Community-oriented and cosmopolitan. I believe we can build on these strengths to build a better Fredericksburg that is still uniquely Fredericksburg.
Fredericksburg has been growing rapidly for a generation, and that growth looks poised to continue. I believe that if we make smart decisions now, we can harness that growth to make Fredericksburg a better Fredericksburg, and include all Fredericksburgers in its prosperity. I also believe that if we miss this moment, that growth could swamp us, change our character, and leave behind many members of our community.
Fredericksburg may be the prettiest and most historic town in America, but it is our people that make us special. All of our people: young and old, newcomers and long established, in all of our wards, are the heart and soul of Fredericksburg. I believe that if we make decisions that always put our people first, then we cannot help but thrive.
I am an American historian. I am married to a small business owner. I am chair of the Economic Development Authority. I’m a father of two, and our kid goes to the City Schools. I’m in a mixed-race same-sex marriage. My unique combination of experiences allows me to respect Fredericksburg’s past and to see how we can build on it for future of inclusive prosperity.
Through my years of teaching history, volunteering, running a local small business, and serving on the Economic Development Authority, I’ve had the chance to lead and participate in many community programs and projects that have motivated me to do even more.
I am running for City Council because I am inspired to bring my passions and experience to serve the City.
As a professional historian, Fredericksburg’s amazing stories and historic fabric really matter to me. Historic preservation is critically important to our city’s character and economic development, and it allows us to be faithful storytellers about all the people who have had a role in creating this City and what it is today.
Adaptive reuse of our beautiful historic buildings is good history, good business and environmentally smart. The best way to ensure their preservation is to make sure they’re loved, they’re lived in, and that they host new generations of small business.
I’ve made that commitment in my own life. My husband Brian and I have lovingly and carefully renovated two historic structures in the city’s Historic District, filled them with businesses, and ensured that they are around to be loved well into the future.
My deep experience in preservation isn’t just theoretical. I’ve devoted my professional career to educating others about the importance of history, and I’ve personally spent countless late-night hours with my hands deep in the guts of old buildings to make sure they remain a living part of our city’s fabric for future generations.
I am excited to pursue land use and incentive policies on City Council that will help our people preserve and thrive in our beautiful historic city.
I am a runner, and my family spends a ton of time biking in the City, so I know full well how popular the Canal Path, the Heritage Trail, and the VCR Trail are. And I know we’re not alone, because on a nice day, our existing trails are crowded with people traveling from one part of our City to another, or just getting some exercise and sunshine. Mixed-use paths like these are an incredible enhancement to our quality of life, and they represent Fredericksburg’s future. I think we should build on these amenities to make them even more accessible to everyone in Fredericksburg.
Undoubtedly, the advent of e-bikes will increase the popularity of our trails, and more people will become comfortable living a car-light lifestyle in Fredericksburg if we can give them the infrastructure to do so safely. Making trails accessible to everyone will allow people to get around town without the need for a car (if they so choose). This will benefit our environment, provide some relief for our congested roadways, and alleviate some of our parking woes.
We need to finish the pathway on Lafayette Boulevard and build pathways on the Route 1, Route 2, and Route 3 corridors. We need to connect those pathways to every neighborhood. Every Fredericksburg citizen, of all ages and stripes, should have the freedom of mobility and the opportunity to explore our city from the outside. Our city has so much to offer out there!
I am running for City Council because I want to help the city achieve high-quality mixed-use pathways within 5 minutes of every home in the entire City.
For years, as Chair of the Economic Development Authority, I have been working in the background to help the effort to enhance Career and Technical Education (CTE) in our City Schools. Years ago we let those programs languish, and it’s high time we built them back up again. From my efforts, I know that the City Schools are working hard on this project, but they need more support from City Council.
When the City and the Schools were logjammed over whether 2300 Fall Hill Avenue (the old hospital) could be used as a school facility, I led the EDA in making a substantial investment to fund the necessary study to determine the feasibility of that building. Unfortunately, the study revealed that 2300 Fall Hill Avenue wasn’t suitable, but we finally had an answer, and the city could move on to the important decisions about building a new middle school, with a significant CTE component.
This study also showed me that we need to provide more space for CTE efforts at the high school level as well. We need to build training programs to ensure all of our students are prepared for modern careers, not just those who are headed to four-year colleges. Through these conversations, I have become inspired by the vision of a Career and Technical Education campus connected to our City Schools that can bring together the resources of James Monroe, Germanna, UMW, and employers in the city. All of those institutions are excited to be at the table, we just have to find the political will to make it happen.
On City Council, my track record of serious engagement on this issue will enable me to bring together stakeholders from around the City to help build significant CTE programs so we can prepare our kids for the jobs that are coming here and make sure that they get to share in Fredericksburg’s prosperity.
Fredericksburg is a small city, with very little space left for greenfield development. Luckily, I don’t think greenfield development is a smart choice for us, environmentally, or economically.
What we do have, however, is plenty of underutilized space in our commercial corridors that could be re-developed into real neighborhoods, where people live, work, and play. Those neighborhoods could provide workforce housing, new green space, and new tax revenue. Also, if we commit to connecting them to the rest of the City with high-quality bike and pedestrian paths, they will add fewer cars to our highways than greenfield developments.
Through its small area planning process, the City staff has offered a compelling vision of what those neighborhoods could look like, but we must bolster their efforts with the political will to realize their vision. We need leadership who can work with the private sector to make sure that their investments meet our targets for workforce housing, green space, and amenities. We have no time to waste as the City is growing rapidly and we need to intentionally direct that growth in ways that will benefit all of our citizens.
I am excited to join the Council so we can work on creating the right set of incentives, both carrots and sticks, so I can work with the private sector to make those visions a reality.
Everyone who lives in Fredericksburg has a right to safe and comfortable housing. And to me, historic preservation means making sure we’re taking care of the buildings we have. The City used to have a rental inspection program that required all rental units in the City to be regularly inspected for safety and code compliance, but the City let that program lapse in 2009. It’s past time that we renewed that program to ensure that our citizens are living in high-quality housing and to ensure that our old buildings are being appropriately maintained. The cost could easily be borne by fees imposed on landlords or by enhancements to the existing landlord tax.
As a member of City Council, I will push to make sure that our City’s housing stock is properly built and maintained for the benefit of all citizens.
...and I’m running for an at large seat on Fredericksburg City Council. My family and I moved to Fredericksburg a dozen years ago, and this town has embraced us with open arms and provided us with opportunities we could never have imagined. I’ve had the opportunity to build a career as an American historian at Mary Washington, in a place where the walls breathe history. My husband has had the opportunity to build a successful small business thanks to Fredericksburg’s dynamic downtown. I’ve already had the opportunity to give back by serving as a member of the City’s Economic Development Authority.
Most importantly, we have had the opportunity to build our family as a mixed-race same-sex couple; we’ve had two children here, and no one has ever blinked an eye. This kind of community embrace was beyond our wildest imagination when we moved here. And that’s why I’m running: I love this town, and I want to help it continue to offer that welcome and those opportunities to everyone who makes their home here.
"The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 26 endorses Will Mackintosh for Fredericksburg City Council at-large. His focus on ensuring prosperity for all members of the community, and his track record in advocating for training in the trades in the City Schools, make him the strongest candidate for City Council this year."
"The unions of the Northern Virginia Labor Federation, AFL-CIO, support Will Mackintosh because he has the intellect, values and experience to be a great city council member. He understands the needs of working families in Fredericksburg and will work creatively with all stakeholders."
“As active members of our local communities, REALTOR® and affiliate members of FAAR have a strong interest in this year’s elections. I am pleased with the impressive slate of candidates that FAAR has endorsed. If elected, these individuals will contribute much to our local communities by working to address issues like lack of available housing supply, traffic congestion, and infrastructure improvements,” stated FAAR’s 2023 Public Policy Committee Chair Matthew Young. “FAAR strongly supports each of the candidates endorsed for public office and looks forward to working with these individuals at the local level. The real estate industry is an integral part of our local economy, and it is vital that REALTORS® help elect candidates who understand those connections and are willing to work with our industry on issues of importance.”
"LGBTQ+ Victory Fund is pleased to endorse Will Mackintosh for Fredericksburg City Council,” said Mayor Annise Parker, President & CEO of LGBTQ Victory Fund. “Will will bring a unique and important perspective to the city council and ensure all residents are considered when policy decisions are made."