A Kentucky man who was denied a same-sex marriage license by county clerk Kim Davis announced Wednesday that he will run against her in 2018.

David Ermold, 43, said he will run  for the clerk’s seat to “restore professional leadership, fairness, and responsibility to the clerk’s office,” according to the Lexington Herald Leader.

“I am running to restore the confidence of the people in our clerk’s office and because I believe that the leaders of our community should act with integrity and fairness, and they should put the needs of their constituents first,” Ermold said, according to the newspaper. “I will build upon the successes of the past, and I will seek solutions for the challenges we may still face.”


Davis was briefly jailed in 2015 after she refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples following the Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide, despite a federal judge’s order to her to do so.

She announced last month that she plans to run for reelection next year.

Ermold married his partner of nearly 20 years in a different county after Davis, who was elected as a Democrat, refused to issue the couple a marriage license, citing her personal beliefs against same-sex marriage. Davis switched parties to become a Republican following the controversy.

She traveled to Romania earlier this year to campaign for a proposed change to the country’s constitutional definition of marriage that would exclude same-sex couples.

Ermold teaches English at the University of Pikeville and directs a local gay rights organization.