The Philadelphia Tribune reported last week that Brown’s Super Stores President and CEO Jeff Brown is weighing a run for mayor in 2023. Brown owns and operates several ShopRite stores in Philadelphia and the suburbs, and has garnered goodwill over the years by placing supermarkets in food deserts, employing a largely African American workforce, and hiring people with criminal records.
Brown said in a recent statement that he is concerned about the direction of the city, the demise of small businesses, the rise in gun violence, as well as food insecurity and unemployment.
Some local government experts think Brown has the name recognition and deep pockets to bankroll such a campaign, and that his physical stores could prove to be valuable infrastructure where he could connect with voters on a daily basis.
Brown clashed with current Mayor Jim Kenney five years ago when Kenney enacted Philadelphia’s sweetened beverage tax, but many are skeptical that Brown would campaign on repealing the tax, considering it helps pay for many popular social programs.