Mick Cornett, who is finishing his fourth and final term as mayor of Oklahoma City, announced Wednesday he is preparing a run for governor in 2018.

Cornett, a Republican, likely would go into a GOP primary contest against candidates including Tulsa personal injury lawyer Gary Richardson and Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb.

Cornett shared his plans Wednesday evening with more than 20,000 people who follow him on Twitter.

“We’ve thought a lot about our future since I said I wasn’t running for re-election,” Cornett wrote. “We want to take our record of success to all of Oklahoma. Next week I’ll be filing the papers and making it official that I’ll be a candidate for governor. Our work is just beginning for Oklahoma.”

Cornett spent 20 years in broadcast journalism as an anchor and reporter before making a successful run for Oklahoma City’s Ward 1 council seat. In 2004 he was elected as the city’s 35th mayor and was the first in the city’s history to be elected to four terms.

He is wrapping a term as president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors and is the longest serving mayor among the 50 largest cities in America. His tenure at City Hall included the successful recruiting of the NBA to Oklahoma City, a citywide fitness initiative, passage of MAPS 3 and sweeping changes to the city’s approach to walkability, place-making and planning.
Governing magazine named him national “Public Official of the Year.” Politico placed him on the publication’s Politico 50 list of “thinkers, doers and visionaries transforming American politics in 2015.”

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