The deadline for applications to replace former Louisville Metro Councilwoman Judy Green expired Wednesday and a wide variety of candidates have stepped forward to succeed the disgraced lawmaker.
Sixteen residents have applied for the District 1 seat, which was vacated after Green was removed from office for misconduct and ethics violations. The candidates include a former police officer, social justice advocate, educator and business consultant, who are all seeking to represent a district that includes neighborhoods in west and southwest Louisville.
Kentucky Jobs With Justice coordinator and one-time Jefferson County school board candidate Attica Scott is one of the candidates seeking the office. She says there are several issues that need addressing in the district, including the redistricting process.
“I’ve been involved in the redistricting process this entire year, so I’m ready to see us expand, grow and to build relationships with our new brothers and sisters who joined District 1. And I’m ready to move forward with other members of the council to forge partnerships to build up District 1,” she says.
Earlier this week, state Rep. Reginald Meeks, D-Louisville, organized a forum for residents interested in applying for the seat. Several of the applicants listed by the council clerk’s office showed up at that meeting, which Meeks says was a chance for constituents to size-up the prospective replacement.
Chickasaw Neighborhood Association President Donovan Taylor attended the forum and has also applied for the seat. He says the Green scandal has raised the bar for applicants, but that it shouldn’t disqualify certain residents.
“I hope this process would continue to raise the bar for our public servants, whether they’re up for election or being nominated due to other circumstances,” he says. “I hope the council looks at each candidate holistically and see that certain individuals that may have certain transgressions against them have or still may be the most viable candidate to really push the district and the city forward.”
Among the other applicants is Ray Barker, Sr., who filed the initial ethics complaint against Green that led to her ouster from office.
The Jefferson County Attorney’s office will ensure the applicants are qualified to hold the office and run the applicants through a background check. The council has less than 30 days to interview candidates and choose a replacement by a majority-vote.
“I commend those who are interested in serving the people of District 1,” Council President Jim King, D-10, said in a news release. “Public service is a great and rewarding responsibility and these applicants are offering themselves as a way to make a difference in Metro Louisville.”
King says he will call a special council meeting next month to interview those who have applied. The successor will fulfill the remainder of Green’s tern, however, they will have to run in the May 2012 primary to retain the seat.
“We will be very thorough in this process,” says King. “The Council will give these applicants the opportunity to tell us their vision and goals for District 1. From there we will select the person who will do the best job.”
Here are the District 1 applicants:
- Ray A Barker Sr., former Louisville police officer and McDonald’s general manager
- Attica Woodson Scott, coordinator with Kentucky Jobs With Justice
- Janis Carter Miller, substitute teach with Jefferson County Public Schools
- Alan D. Benson, President of Benson Group, LLC
- Eric Irvin Sr., field investigator at Wilkes & McHugh law firm
- Rosa G. Macklin, co-founder All for You, LLC
- Edna L. Harris, retired, former federal employee
- Courtney L. Phelps, attorney at law
- Thomas K. Recktenwald, computer teacher at Notre Dame Academy
- Ameerah Z. Granger, community school program for Jefferson County Public Schools
- CheRhonda Greenlee, real estate agent
- James R. Ponder, vice president at Chase Bank
- Steven D. Colston, general maintenance mechanic at the University of Louisville
- Connell Devon Stokes, customer care employee at Humana Inc.
Eddie Davis, freelance photographer
Donovan C. Taylor, legal assistant at Williams & Associates
UPDATE: Freelance photographer Eddie Davis informed the council clerk’s office he was withdrawing his name from consideration for the District 1 seat. There are 15 applicants, officially.
UPDATE II: Donovan Taylor, who is president of the Chickasaw Federation, withdrew his application citing personal reasons.
“I believe my candidacy maybe unduly tainted by my background rather than focusing on my true character,” he says.