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Project Baseline participant wins election to City Council

| Written by:
Tina Karimi

Tina Karimi

Contributing Editor, Verily

Balloons, cheers and congratulations awaited Andy Langford, 67, when he arrived for his annual Health Study visit, after winning a seat on the City Council in Concord, N.C.

"I'm very proud to be part of Project Baseline, and I believe that it's making a major difference in our community and hopefully in the world," said Andy. "Participating in clinical research, just like being an elected official, is a way for me to give back to my community."

Andy has a long history of community service. Recently retired after 42 years as a United Methodist minister, he began participating in clinical research studies in 2009 at the Duke School of Medicine site in Kannapolis, where he enrolled in Project Baseline.

Running for elected office wasn't on Andy's "bucket list," he jokes. When a City Council member and good friend passed away unexpectedly, Andy conducted the funeral service. Friends and family began to encourage him to run for his friend's seat.

Four months later, Andy won election to a four-year term in Concord, a city with a population nearing 100,000. He was sworn into office on Dec. 12.

"Project Baseline and ministry and now elected office – they are all the same things, just different dimensions of public service," he said.

His campaign motto was simple. "I will listen, I will study hard, and I will make hard decisions."

Andy estimates that he talked to thousands of voters during the campaign, and their requests were often related to health and wellness.

"They want more parks, greenways and bike lanes and better access to healthcare. It's about quality of life and healthy living," he said. "That echoes Project Baseline, which is about giving back and serving the whole person, serving every constituency. Just like serving on City Council."

Next story: Project Baseline's top 10 2019 moments and 2020 predictions

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