Two more names have surfaced for consideration when Toledo City Council meets Jan. 3 - one for president and one for the District 3 vacancy.
Both are related to the Lucas County Democratic Party's choice this week of political neophyte Taylor Balderas for appointment to the soon-to-be-vacant District 3 seat.
At-large Councilman Frank Szollosi said yesterday he'll bid for council president, making him the fifth active candidate for the post.
And Joann Vanderpool, 70, a longtime Democratic Party activist, said she would apply for the District 3 vacancy. She immediately won the endorsement of the outgoing District 3 representative, Bob McCloskey.
Mrs. Vanderpool of 919 Colburn St. is Mr. McCloskey's campaign treasurer. She was at the forefront of a successful effort in 1998 to allow Rite Aid to demolish a strip of older buildings at Broadway and South Avenue to build a drugstore.
Her position was at odds with then-Mayor Carty Finkbeiner, who allegedly yelled at her about it, she said at the time. Since then, she said, they have been on good terms.
She did not screen for the vacancy because she expected the party's endorsement to go to an East Toledoan because most of District 3 is in East Toledo.
"If I had known they were going to pick a south-ender, I would have been the first one down there with my resume," Mrs. Vanderpool said.
Both she and Ms. Balderas live in the old south end.
Ms. Balderas, 22, said yesterday she plans to meet with council members to solicit their support. She said she sought the seat because she's interested in community action and because she was urged by Mr. Finkbeiner and others to run.
Yesterday, Mr. Finkbeiner issued a statement in support of Ms. Balderas, saying she has demonstrated "excellent leadership skills" in high school, college, and in her current job.
The administrative assistant for Viva South Toledo community development corporation, she was picked by the party's executive committee on Wednesday.
The party recommends council appointees, but the choice is made by council.
Among the other six Democrats who had screened for the party's endorsement, Mary Flores-Ward, 73, a city government payroll supervisor, also said she would lobby council for the appointment. She said she has more experience than Ms. Balderas, but also believes the appointment should go to a Hispanic. Ms. Flores-Ward also is Hispanic.
Mr. McCloskey said he was surprised by the appointment, and was disappointed that he was not consulted.
"I thought that this was going to be kind of a council based on people that had some business experience, and then all of a sudden a 22-year-old who just graduated from school," Mr. McCloskey said.
He said he was disappointed enough that he may switch his support for council president from Mark Sobczak to Mr. Szollosi.
"I had my vote committed, but that may change," he said.
Mr. Sobczak, a newly elected at-large councilman, is considered the choice of the party for council president, and has been courting Mr. McCloskey and the four Republicans in hopes of securing a six-vote majority.
Mr. Szollosi, 33, said he believes he can win Mr. McCloskey's vote, which would give him the necessary six-vote majority. Mr. Szollosi has been on council since 2003. He was a former campaign manager for Mr. Finkbeiner, but became a high-profile supporter of Mayor Jack Ford in the recent election.
He joins fellow Democrats District 1 Councilman Wilma Brown and Mr. Sobczak, and at-large Councilman George Sarantou and District 2 Councilman Rob Ludeman, both Republicans, in seeking the presidency.
The current president of council, Louis Escobar, did not seek re-election this year.
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