Newport resident Beth Cullen today announced her candidacy for an At-Large seat on Newport City Council.

Cullen’s Full Announcement

Beth Cullen, a fourth-generation Newport resident with a long history of community involvement and civic activism, declared her candidacy Monday for a Newport City Council At-Large seat. Cullen is the past president of the Point Association, co-founder of the Newport Nextdoor social media platform, and a long-time education reform advocate. 

Cullen’s run is endorsed by former Newport Mayor and School Committee Chairman, David S. Gordon, who said, “I’ve known Beth for over 25 years, she is a hard worker who cares deeply for Newport. As both mayor and chair of the school committee, I worked together with Beth on many civic improvements and education reform. She will bring a strong, experienced voice to the city council.” 

After signing the candidacy papers, Cullen said “I’m bringing my strong voice, dynamic approach, and strategic vision to the council table. During the ongoing economic turmoil, we’ve got to be smarter and more intentional. I have the time, the talent, and the tenacity necessary to work hard for residents.” 

Concerned with Newport’s rapid build-out of hotel rooms and over-dependency on taxes from the tourism sector, Cullen said that “residents tell me that they want council members asking tougher questions, highlighting innovative solutions used by other cities, streamlining city processes, and fighting Newport’s legendary old-school ways.” 

Cullen, 59, lives on Bayside Avenue with her husband Mike and son Mac. A 1982 URI graduate, her resume includes marketing communications, hospitality, and sales management positions in MA, NY, and RI. She has served on several local nonprofit boards and is currently on the executive board of the UMass Dartmouth Kaput Center for Research & Innovation in STEM Education.

The 2020 election season is officially underway, as candidates for local, statewide, and legislative seats begin to file their declarations of candidacy this week.

Those wishing to run for General Assembly or local offices must file with the local board of canvassers in the town in which they are registered to vote between June 22 and June 24.

Those declaring to run for U.S. Senate or U.S. House of Representatives must file with the Department of State’s Elections Division, 148 West River St., Providence.

Party endorsements are due by June 26 for U.S. Senate and U.S. House, and June 25 for all local and General Assembly races.

The next major step for candidate is picking up nomination papers from local canvassers on June 30 and returning them with the required number of signatures by July 10.

For local offices, the number of signatures is set by the Canvassing Authorities and may vary by community.

For General Assembly seats, Senatorial candidates must collect 100 signatures, House of Representative candidates, 50. For U.S. Senate the minimum is 1,000 and U.S. Representatives, 500.

The deadline for individuals to withdraw their candidacies is July 13, otherwise their name appears on the ballot, even if they decide not to run.

All this leads to the primary election on Sept. 8, and the general election on Nov. 3. The deadline to register to vote for the primary is August 9, for the general election, Oct. 4.

Follow our 2020 Election Coverage here and here – Who’s running for office in Newport County? List of local and state candidates is here

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Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp. 
Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, Belmore graduated from Coventry High School and the Community College of Rhode Island. In addition to living in Newport for 10 years, he has lived in Portsmouth, Coventry, Providence, Smithfield, Burrillville, and East Greenwich.

Belmore currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the Board of Lucy's Hearth and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

Belmore and his wife, Jen, currently live in Alexandria, Virginia, a move they made in 2021. Read more about that here -

Belmore visits Newport every couple of weeks to support the 12+ paid contributors What'sUpNewp has on the ground across Rhode Island, a place he called home for 39 years.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

In 2020, Belmore was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.
Belmore can be contacted at and 401-662-1653.