Politics, government and public life for Southern California

Long Beach has a crowded ballot for mayor

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Ten candidates crowd the primary ballot for mayor of Long Beach, hoping to succeed Bob Foster, who is not running for re-election. The April 8 primary election in L.A. County's second-largest city includes races for city attorney, prosecutor, auditor and five council districts.

Termed-out Assemblywoman Bonnie Lowenthal is running for mayor, a full-time job that pays $141,000, a bump up from her $90,500 Assembly pay. Lowenthal is a former Long Beach city council member and former school board member.

Lowenthal is a familiar name to Long Beach voters. They have elected her ex-husband Alan Lowenthal to Congress and her former daughter-in-law Suja Lowenthal to the City Council. Suja had been considering a run for mayor, but shifted her sights last year to run for Bonnie Lowenthal's Assembly post.

Two current council members are on the mayoral ballot — Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske of the northeastern 5th District and Vice-mayor Robert Garcia of the west end 1st District. Either would become the city's first openly gay mayor.

Another familiar name on the mayoral ballot is Long Beach City College trustee Doug Otto. An attorney and former planning commissioner, he participated in planning of the waterfront tourist zone, and served on the board of the Aquarium of the Pacific.

Other candidates are:

  • Damon Dunn — Real estate businessman and former Stanford/NFL football player.
  • Jana K. Shields — Linguist and previous city council candidate who is active in the Long Beach's Willmore City district.
  • Mineo L. Gonzalez — Auditor for state Department of Health Care Services.
  • Steven Mozena — Businessman who ran for Los Angeles mayor in 2001.
  • Richard Camp — Businessman
  • Eric Rock — Provided no information, could not be reached by phone or email.

If no candidate receives 50 percent of the vote in the primary, a runoff will be held on June 3.


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