Former Oliver Thomas board member Lesli Harris wins city council seats; see election results



After several city council races in November were too close to be announced, the results of Saturday’s run-off election will bring some new faces to the council next year.

Oliver Thomas will return to city council, defeating mandate holder Cyndi Nguyen.

Reports show Thomas with 57% of the vote and all but one constituency declared by 11pm.

Thomas, who served on council from 1994 to 2007, was once considered a “sure thing” for the city‘s next mayor before a federal corruption charge in 2007 put his New Orleans political career on hold. . He was convicted of accepting $ 15,000 from Stan “Pampy” Barre, who owned several parking garages in the French Quarter and wanted Thomas to renew his business contracts with the city.

Despite the scandals surrounding Thomas, he got the backing of council president Helena Moreno, who spent her first term on city council alongside Thomas.

“Oliver paid the price for his mistakes and built himself as an advocate for the community,” Moreno said in a supportive video. “I know Oliver, I know his character and I know he will be a vital partner in the next city council.”

Prior to the election, Thomas hosted a morning radio show on WBOK-AM and has served as Marketing Manager at Stuart Consulting Group since 2016.

Thomas’ campaign has addressed the district’s high crime rate and illegal dumping grounds as priorities when he takes office.

Lesli Harris defeated incumbent Jay Banks after securing 57% of the District B vote.

In the weeks leading up to the second round of elections, the race intensified as candidates clashed publicly. Banks highlighted Harris’ campaign donations from club owners when she said she wanted to turn Magazine Street, one of the main thoroughfares through District B, into another Bourbon Street.

Harris fired back, saying Banks was generally unresponsive in his role as a member of city council. Both candidates won the support of the state’s main Democrats.

City Council Chair Helena Moreno and U.S. Representative Troy Carter backed Harris over incumbent banks, while he received approval from Mayor LaToya Cantrell and Governor John Bel Edwards.

Banks is well served in the city; he is a member of the board of directors of Zulu and a member of the board of directors of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation. He has also served as Chief of Staff to former City Council members Dorothy Mae Taylor and James Singleton.

Harris, an entertainment lawyer, tried to discredit Banks during the primary by handing out flyers saying his former work as a lobbyist for Entergy prevented him from playing a key role for the Council in the years to come by regulating the city’s energy company.

Harris’ former jobs include representing the Saints and Pelicans of New Orleans as well as the chief of staff at Loyola University. She lent her campaign $ 28,700 of her personal money.

Freddie King III, a former public defender of the Orléans parish, will become the new member of the City Council of District C after securing 62% of the vote at 11 p.m.

King defeats Stephanie Bridges, who is also a former lawyer in the city.

King nearly won District C in the primary election, but fell 6% below the 50% threshold. King won the support of all Democratic politicians in Louisiana, including Governor John Bel Edwards. King runs a law firm in Algiers.

King will replace Kristin Gisleson Palmer who chose to run for the second At-Large position on City Council, instead of running for another term in District C. Palmer lost in the primary to JP Morrell.

Eugene Green, president of Nationwide Real Estate Corporation, won the race for District D with reports showing he got 60 more votes than his challenger, Troy Glover, former president of the St. Roch Neighborhood Improvement Association, in 22:25.

Green was the economic development head of former mayor Marc Morial and campaigned for various positions before without ever having success. Green, who is seen as more moderate than the progressive candidates he faced in the primary, has been supported by the Times-Picayune, the Alliance of Good Government and the New Orleans Coalition.

Green received 35% of the primary votes, competing in a diverse field of 14 candidates who split the vote.

The new District Criminal Court clerk will be Darren Lombard, with reports showing he won 56% of the vote with all reports from the precinct except one at 11pm.

Lombard was the second clerk of the West Bank municipal court. His opponent, Badon, served a term as the first city court clerk, keeping records for evictions and small claims on the East Bank.

Badon led in the primary elections, winning 43% of the vote against 30% for Lombard.

The post is vacated by Arthur Morrell, who has held the post since 2006.


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