Earlier this year, current Cleveland Mayor, Frank Jackson, announced he would not run for re-election this fall. With no need to beat an incumbent, the Cleveland mayoral race suddenly became competitive.
Thirteen individuals declared their intent to run for mayor. The City of Cleveland, however, has a difficult qualification requirement to run: 3,000 valid signatures from Cleveland residents. The deadline to file a petition to run, with the 3,000 valid signatures, had to be submitted by June 16 (yesterday).
Of the thirteen individuals who declared their intent to run for mayor, only eight officially filed and it appears that all eight met the qualification requirement. The official candidates for the Mayor of the City of Cleveland are as follows:
- A lifelong Clevelander, Bibb has worked for different local businesses and in the philanthropic sector. Most recently, he worked with mayors, business leaders, and community organizers across the country as the Chief Strategy Officer of Urbanova. Urbanova is a start-up to make cities safer, healthier, and more resilient.
- As candidate for Mayor of Cleveland, Bibb believes that Cleveland can no longer wait for change. He wants to focus on six issues: safe and secure neighborhoods, economic relief and recovery, high-quality education, a modern and engaged city hall, healthier communities, and climate and environmental justice. He would like to create an Office of Economic Recovery to create a long-term plan for City spending. Those who are in support of Justin Bibb’s candidacy for Cleveland Mayor believe that he will bring Cleveland into the 21st century.
- DiBello has spent his entire professional career in Cleveland as a local attorney, working for a local judge and then within a local firm. During the early years in his career, he worked two full-time jobs at minimum wage to pay off his debts.
- Dibello is ready to create a better Cleveland for everyone. Homelessness, child poverty, racial injustice, housing inequity, and lead paint are just some of the issues that Dibello is ready to tackle head on. He believes better education will help the police force generate better responses to crises rather than continuing to use armed forces with every call. Dibello knows that there is always more work to be done, but he wants to go back to the basics to fight all the injustices that trouble the City of Cleveland.
- Raised in Cleveland, Jones ran for Ward 7 Councilman in 2017, was elected, and became Cleveland’s first Muslim Council member. He currently serves as vice-chair on the Health and Human Services Committee and sits on Development Planning and Sustainability, Safety and Workforce and Community Benefits.
- Jones has created “The Jones Plan for a Better Cleveland” that he hopes to implement as Mayor. The goal of this plan is to implement five strategies to improve Cleveland: diversify the safety forces and equipment in the City, equitably distribute Covid-19 relief money, improve business relations, increase government transparency and accountability, and, finally, ensure all third graders can pass the Third Grade Reading Guarantee. Jones is committed to making the City of Cleveland united.
- Having raised his family in Cleveland, in 2005, Kelley ran and was elected to the Cleveland City Council to represent Ward 13. Later in his career, he was unanimously elected to serve as President of City Council, and he serves as the chair of council’s Finance Committee and Rules Committee and serves on Operations and Mayor’s Appointment committees.
- Kelley sees a future for Cleveland that leaves no one behind. His dream includes a plan of nine priorities to accomplish while in office. These priorities include public safety, workforce development, paid parental leave, digital equity, fighting corporate greed, housing stability, investing in public health, transit and transportation, and voting rights. Kelley is running with 16 years of experience on the City Council, energy, passion and a vision that he believes will create movement within Cleveland.
- On June 14th, Kucinich announced his bid to run for Cleveland Mayor, and if elected, he will be the oldest Cleveland Mayor. He previously served as Cleveland’s youngest mayor in 1977 and has spent the intervening years serving in a variety of elected positions.
- Kucinich vows to create a safe and peaceful city. On top of his upgrades to the police departments, he plans to add 400 officers to the police force that currently has 1600 officers. Kucinich recognizes that safety in the City is his current top priority, but there are other issues that need to be addressed, such as poverty, homelessness, healthcare access, and the lead paint crisis. His administration anticipates taking a holistic approach while in office to better serve the Cleveland community.
- In 2001, Reed was appointed to the Cleveland City Council and won the seat in the subsequent November election. In 2019, Reed started working at the Ohio Secretary of State’s Office as the Minority Affairs Coordinator. He worked to address the needs of the minority community by helping to combat misinformation that targeted these communities.
- Reed is running on a four-point plan that makes up his vision in creating real and lasting changes. His first priority is to focus on making Cleveland a healthier community. He also wants to prioritize safe neighborhoods by hiring more officers and modifying their training program, create a stronger public school system, and bring business leaders together to create a long-lasting economic plan for the city. Reed’s administration believes it will help bring Cleveland back on track.
- A former military veteran and Cuyahoga Metropolitan Police Officer, Simmons has served over twenty-five years as a Cuyahoga County Deputy Sheriff. Most recently, Simmons was elected the Cuyahoga County Republican Party 11B Committeeman.
- Simmons seeks to expand the numerous safety programs he ran during his tenure in law enforcement. The backbone of his campaign is law and order. But he also wants to focus on creating safe streets, building a strong economy, and establishing smarter schools for a better learning environment. Simmons supports local unions and looks forward to promoting a brighter future for all of Cleveland’s residents.
- Born and raised in Cleveland, Williams served in the U.S. Army Reserves while obtaining her education. For over two decades, Williams has served as a member of the Ohio House and the Ohio Senate. Currently, Williams is the State Senator for the 21st District of Ohio, which includes 12 of the City of Cleveland’s 17 wards.
- Williams’ vision for the City of Cleveland is to create a city of opportunity, where economic, racial and gender inequality is no longer an issue. Williams' vision also extends to fixing crime, and improving community and police relationships by expanding services to address the public’s needs. Her administration anticipates focusing on bringing home dollars for workforce development, job training programs, and other economic opportunities.
The primary election is scheduled for September 14. The general election will be on November 2. Brennan Manna Diamond will continue to monitor the election as it progresses.