Two district incumbents and at-large member make the cut in Urban County Council races

jwarren@herald-leader.comMay 20, 2014 

Two Urban County Council district incumbents made the cut in contested races Tuesday to advance to the November general election, as did an at-large council member running in a district race.

Five of Lexington's council districts had contested races in Tuesday's primary, with the top two vote-getters in each district moving on to the fall general election.

A former council member also won a chance at returning to the council.

In District 2, incumbent Shevawn Akers was the leading vote-getter, and Michael Stuart eliminated Byron Costner in the battle for second.

Akers, a social worker who works for Volunteers of America in Lexington, is wrapping up her first term on the council. Stuart, who owns and operates a small business that he started at age 21, is a member of the LexArts board and was president of the Living Arts & Science Center.

In District 3, J. "Jake" Gibbs and Chuck Ellinger II emerged as winners over Rock Daniels.

Gibbs, a longtime teacher at Bluegrass Community and Technical College, led the field in his first race for public office.

Ellinger was running for a district seat Tuesday because term limits prohibited him seeking another term as an at-large council member.

District 3 was open because Diane Lawless did not seek re-election.

The top runners in District 4 on Tuesday were Susan Lamb and incumbent Julian Beard. Barry Saturday, in third, was eliminated.

Lamb, a first-time candidate who finished first, has more than 20 years of experience working in city government, including time as council clerk.

Beard, who finished second, is a retired banker whose positions have often reflected his background.

In District 6, Angela Evans will run against Thomas J. Hern this fall. They ran ahead of Darren Hawkins.

Evans, an attorney and former public defender, has worked in state government and served on the Lexington Ethics Commission.

Hern, an automotive dealership consultant, has said his background will help him understand the financial issues faced by the city.

Fred V. Brown, a former council member, and newcomer LeTonia A. Jones emerged as the winners in District 8, beating out Dave Vinson and Amy Beasley.

Jones has an extensive background in social work, including service at Lexington's Rape Crisis Center and as an administrator for the Kentucky Domestic Violence Association.

Brown, semi-retired as a partner in a Lexington accounting firm, represented District 8 from 1994 until 2004.

Incumbents had no opposition in four other districts.

The four returnees are Chris Ford in District 1, Bill Farmer Jr. in District 5, Peggy Henson in District 11 and Ed Lane in District 12.

Three other council districts had only two candidates each, so both contenders in those districts move on to the November race.

They are Michael Moynahan and incumbent Jennifer Scutchfield in District 7, Victoria Fath and incumbent Jennifer Mossotti in District 9, and incumbent Harry Clarke and Amanda Mays Bledsoe in District 10.

Jim Warren: (859) 231-3255.

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