Politics & Government

Vice Mayor Steve Kay leads field of six in Lexington at-large council race

Lexington Vice Mayor Steve Kay led the six candidates who emerged from Tuesday's race for three council at-large seats, followed by former councilman Chuck Ellinger and current at-large councilman Richard Moloney.

The other three winners in Tuesday's primary were political newcomers Adrian Wallace, Connie Kell and Lillie Miller-Johnson.

The person who receives the most votes in November becomes vice mayor and will lead the 15-member Lexington-Fayette Urban County Council. The second and third place finishers become at-large members and serve four-year terms.

The city-wide race is nonpartisan. The vice mayor makes $34,451. All other council members receive an annual salary of $31,606.

Kay, 74, campaigned on smart growth and more infill development, affordable housing and community policing.

"I think it shows that people care about good, steady, honest leadership, and that the issues I've worked on have been important to people in the community," Kay said Tuesday night. "I take this vote as a vote of confidence in the work I've been doing."

Ellinger, 54, served as an at-large council member from 2003 to 2014. He ran unsuccessfully for the 3rd District Council seat in 2014.

Moloney, 58, is an at-large council member who was elected to the position in 2014. Moloney also served seven terms on the council from 1987 until 2007. Prior to returning to council in 2014, Moloney served in Mayor Jim Gray's administration.

Adrian Wallace, 32, runs a community development nonprofit and does public relations consulting. He is the former president of the Lexington-Fayette branch of the NAACP. His campaign focused on prevention of drug abuse and free preschool.

Wallace was charged with driving under the influence in Franklin County in 2008, an incident he said was a personal mistake.

Kell, 64, has run unsuccessfully for Urban County Council before, both for an at-large seat in 2014 and for the 9th Council District seat in 2012. She wants the government to collect more taxes from out-of-town businesses to better fund local programs.

Lillie Miller-Johnson, 63, is in her third-term as a soil and water conservation district supervisor. She campaigned on affordable housing and better public safety.

The other four candidates were Harry Clarke, Arnold Farr, Todd Hamill and Matt Miniard.


Top six advance

Steve Kay25,015

Chuck Ellinger II


Richard Moloney


Adrian Wallace


Connie Kell


Lillie E. Miller-Johnson


Harry Clarke


Arnold L. Farr


Todd Hamill


Matt Miniard