Just like at the presidential level, the race begins now for the 2016 in Southeast Baltimore. The 1st District City Council seat, which covers Fells Point, Canton, Highlandtown and Bayview, isn’t up for re-election until next November. But with current Councilmember James Kraft having already announced his decision not to run for the seat again, candidates are already jumping in.
One night in early March, Zeke Cohen proposed to his fiancee before a large group at the Creative Alliance in Highlandtown. Then, he announced his candidacy for the City Council seat. Cohen is a Goucher and Johns Hopkins University grad who also worked for Teach for America. He founded a nonprofit called The Intersection, which looks to get Baltimore City kids ready for college, and teach them leadership skills. Cohen’s campaign is already hitting the ground in the digital world with a website, and a door-knocking campaign last Saturday.
Cohen’s first opponent emerged Monday, as Pastor Mark Parker of Breath of God Lutheran Church announced his candidacy. As Danielle Sweeney wrote in City Paper last year, Parker’s duties as pastor include an effort to get people from across generations forming community. He’ll meet people in church to do, or he’ll meet them in a bar. The same attitude was evident in the campaign announcement he sent to media on Monday. “I’m running for office to be a collaborative leader within the 1st District,” he said in the statement. “Working side-by-side with citizens, neighborhood leaders, nonprofits and business owners to address our current issues and think creatively about our collective future in Southeast.” For those who want to follow, Parker’s campaign is on Twitter.
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