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Columbus Council Considers Finalists For Latest Vacant Seat

Christopher Columbus statue in front of Columbus City Hall.
Gabe Rosenberg
/
WOSU
The Thursday public hearing starts at 5 p.m. inside council chamber in City Hall.

Columbus City Council meets Thursday evening to get public input on finalists to fill an upcoming vacancy.

There are 14 finalists under consideration for the seat being vacated by Franklin County Auditor-elect Michael Stinziano, who leaves office next month.

Council plans to gather public comment on Thursday and could pick its next member as soon as its Monday meeting.

The latest appointment follows Council selecting new member Shayla Favor, a former assistant Columbus City Attorney, to fill the seat vacated by former member Jaiza Page.

The public hearing element is part of a charter amendment approved by Columbus voters last year. Other provisions of the amendment expand council from seven to nine members and require members to live in certain districts while still being elected city-wide, but those don’t take effect until 2024.

It sought to amend a process that critics said lacked transparency and moved too quickly. Since 1997, three people have been elected to their first stint on council, while 18 others have been appointed to fill a vacancy.

The Thursday public hearing starts at 5 p.m. inside council chamber in City Hall. Finalists for Stinziano’s seat include:

  • Nicholas J. Bankston, director of community affairs for the office of Mayor Andrew Ginther
  • Lourdes Barroso De Padilla, director of the Latina Mentoring Academy
  • Stefanie Lynn Coe, MPW Industrial Services general counsel and Columbus Civil Service commissioner
  • Nancy Day-Achauer, United Methodist Church pastor and community activist
  • Rob Dorans, Columbus Recreation and Parks commissioner
  • Albert Edmonson, barbershop owner and community activist
  • Catherine A. Girves, executive director of Yay Bikes!
  • Chenelle Jones, Public Safety Programs chair at Franklin University
  • Marco Miller
  • Michelle Moskowitz Brown, executive director of Local Matters
  • Rick Neal, former U.S. House candidate
  • Ramona Reyes, Columbus City Schools Board member
  • Sam Shim, Worthington School Board vice president and FCBank board member
  • Erin Synk, South Side Area Commissioner-at-large