'Big Johnny' Is Not One of the 38 People Being Considered for Greg Landsman's Cincinnati City Council Seat

Reggie Harris, who ultimately will appoint Landsman's successor, will present the list of viable applicants during the Nov. 29 public safety and governance committee meeting.

Nov 29, 2022 at 10:05 am
Reggie Harris and the rest of Cincinnati City Council are considering who will take departing council member Greg Landsman's seat in January. - Photo: Nick Swartsell
Photo: Nick Swartsell
Reggie Harris and the rest of Cincinnati City Council are considering who will take departing council member Greg Landsman's seat in January.

A little over three dozen people are officially in the running for a soon-to-be-vacant seat on Cincinnati City Council.

With Cincinnati City Council member Greg Landsman preparing to head to the U.S. House of Representatives in January, the city is making plans to appoint his local successor. Landsman has designated council member Reggie Harris as the person who will appoint the person who will take his seat.

Applications for the position opened Nov. 22 on the city government's website and closed at 11:59 p.m. Nov. 27. Gus Ricksecker, Harris' chief of staff, tells CityBeat that there were 49 total applicants, with 38 of those completing all requirements and being fully considered. Seven people did not submit full applications, one was a test application and one – "Big Johnny" – was tossed for being a joke. See all applicants at the bottom of this story.

During the application period, the city also posted a survey for Cincinnati residents to share what they were looking for in a new council member.

"We sent out a community survey last week, and the responses were overwhelmingly in favor of (1)Prior Involvement in the Community (2) Ability to work with others and (3) Progressive values (all of which around 75% of the 130+ respondents)," Ricksecker says. "These will likely, in tandem with the feedback we get from other council members and interviews, will make a smaller group of candidates stand out."

Ricksecker says that Harris will present the list of 38 viable applicants during the council’s Nov. 29 public safety and governance committee meeting, soliciting feedback from the council about the qualities Landsman's successor should have. Ricksecker adds that later this week, Harris expects to share a narrowed list of candidates to be interviewed. 
During the Nov. 22 address with Landsman, Harris noted that he would announce who he would appoint as the new council member during the week of Dec. 5.

“This is not going to be a popularity contest. The appointment process is a process of continuity. It’s about thinking about what we’ve established over this year and what we’ll do going into the next year,” Harris said then. “And it’s also about choosing someone who has the ability to articulate a clear plan for advancing this council’s priorities: core services, public safety, housing, equity, pedestrian safety and sustainability.”

Generally, Cincinnati’s municipal code says that a designee on Cincinnati City Council must appoint a successor to a vacant seat within 60 days. If the vacancy is not filled, the city’s mayor may appoint someone to the post. A chosen successor would serve as a council member until the end of the predecessor’s original term, when they can choose to run for election to retain their seat.
Landsman won his Cincinnati City Council seat in 2017 and assumed office Jan. 2, 2018. He was reelected in 2021 with a term expiring at the end of 2023. On Nov. 8, Landsman defeated incumbent Steve Chabot in a general election and will represent the 1st Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives in January. During his campaign, Landsman highlighted restoring abortion rights, repairing infrastructure like the Brent Spence Bridge and passing LGBTQIA+ protections as his priorities in Congress. His time on the council largely has focused on general safety, violence reduction, reproductive rights and neighborhood beautification, among other issues.

On Nov. 22, Landsman said that because he will be sworn in as a congressman on Jan. 3, he plans to formally resign his Cincinnati City Council position on Jan. 2. His successor then would take the city’s oath of office that morning.

These 38 candidates are being considered for Landsman's Cincinnati City Council seat:
  • Bill Froehle (withdrawn)
  • Caleb Price
  • Antonio M. Sanders Jr.
  • Adam Koehler
  • Ryan Mahoney
  • Dadrien Washington
  • Quinten Taylor
  • Dean Kaplan
  • Scott Hand
  • Victor Phillips
  • Gavi Begtrup
  • Galen Gordon
  • Gerald Checco
  • Jaime Castle
  • Dale Mallory
  • William Fleaher
  • Jenelle M. Sampson
  • Andrew Kennedy
  • Logan Simmering
  • Tonya Dumas
  • Rick Pescovitz
  • Angelica Hardee
  • Cameron Hardy
  • William Hammond
  • LaKeisha Cook
  • Catherine "Kate" Botos
  • Evan Nolan
  • Michelle Dillingham
  • Thomas Fallon
  • Alyson Beridon
  • Seth Walsh
  • Jackie Frondorf
  • Mark Mussman
  • Michael Binder
  • Te'Airea Powell
  • Raffel Prophett
  • Bree Moss
  • Tamie Sullivan
These seven applicants did not complete all required elements:
  • Elizabeth David
  • Jeffrey Jenkins
  • Jason Riveiro
  • John Thomas
  • Jonathan Williams
  • Mark Fritz
  • Laura LaPrade Stark
This applicant is not being considered:
  • "Big Johnny"
All candidates are listed here in the order they were provided to CityBeat.

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