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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – The number of Independent candidates on the November 4 ballot has just doubled.  A.J. Smith has been certified as an Independent in the race for Alabama State House District 19.

Smith will challenge Rep. Laura Hall, a Democrat.

Smith, a Huntsville native, gathered the required number of signatures and was certified by the Alabama Secretary of State to be on the November ballot.

A.J. Smith
A.J. Smith

“I want to use my 17 years of experience in business and real estate to lead the conversation on how to revitalize my district and bring back the resources from Montgomery that are so desperately needed,” said Smith. “This is my commitment to the voters, my friends, and family. Our district faces many challenges and obstacles, but with new leadership and vision, these challenges will become our opportunities.”

Smith owns Smith Appraisal Service and is a State Certified Appraiser, Commercial Broker with Coldwell Banker Commercial/ McLain Real Estate and a Certified Commercial Investment Member. He formerly served on the Huntsville Planning Commission.

Running as an independent, Smith says he will make it a priority to build partnerships with the community at every level: citizens, local government, civic groups, schools and others. “This campaign is about building a safer and stronger community for our future,” said Smith.

Last week, the Alabama Secretary of State’s office certified Mark Bray as an Independent candidate in the District 5 Congressional race.  Bray is challenging U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks, the Republican incumbent.  There’s no Democrat in the race.