Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Breaking News: Osili Running for 15th District Seat

It's official! More reaction to this later on.

For Immediate Release
January 25, 2011
VOP OSILI, LOCAL BUSINESSMAN AND ARCHITECT,
ANNOUNCES CANDIDACY FOR CITY-COUNTY COUNCIL DISTRICT 15

Community Leaders Issue Call To Osili To Serve

Indianapolis - Indianapolis business owner and architect, Vop Osili, announced that he will file to be a candidate for City-County Council District 15. Osili, who was contacted by various community leaders who asked him to run after City-County Councillor Doris Minton-McNeill indicated she would not seek another term, is being endorsed by Minton-McNeil and others.

Marion County Democratic Party Chairman welcomed Osili to the race. "Once they get to know Vop, the people of Council District 15 will learn what we know - that Vop is a man of integrity and honesty," said Treacy. "We are delighted that he has agreed to bring his many talents to the Democratic team."

Minton-McNeill also expressed her delight that Osili is a candidate. "The seat on the council I leave behind is important to me, and I am delighted that Vop has agreed to become a candidate," said Minton-McNeill. "Whether it be creating new jobs, making our neighborhoods safe, promoting diversity, or educating our children, we have much work to do and I believe that Vop Osili is the right person to lead those efforts and to offer new solutions."

Osili issued the following statement:

“After much encouragement by many community leaders, retiring City-County Councillor Doris Minton McNeill, and my family, I announce today my candidacy for City-County Council. It is my desire to serve my community, and I promise the constituents that I will serve them with honor, dignity and a commitment to public service that includes creating jobs and working for safe neighborhoods. I am ready to offer new ideas to get our community’s economy and neighborhoods moving forward."


The other candidate in the race, Blake Johnson, issued this statement earlier today.

Dear Friends,

I hope this message finds you enjoying the beginnings of this new year. I want to first say thank you for all of the support and kindness that you have shown me throughout the early stages of my campaign for the City-County Council. We came into the race as underdogs, and at times it seemed that we would never be able to accumulate the support necessary to be taken seriously. Despite these extraordinary challenges, though, we were able to raise significant amounts of money and gain the support of individuals from all over the city. I have had the opportunity to work with other great candidates throughout this process, and I have had the rewarding experience of meeting people throughout the city who have shared with me their deep love for this place we call home.

When I jumped into the race for the Indianapolis City-County Council 8 months ago, I did so with a vision for how our city ought to look. I stepped forward because I felt that it was time for a new way of doing business, particularly in the 15th district. In every conversation I had, I spoke of my commitment to ensure that citizens in the 15th would be represented with passion and conviction, and perhaps most importantly, that when my neighbors near and far had concerns, they would have a responsive and invested individual to which they could turn.

That vision has been unwavering, and it continues to drive my work in the classroom and in our community. After recently speaking with my friend Vop Osili and hearing his interest in seeking the nomination as well, I have made the decision that I will step aside and work with Vop as he seeks our party’s nomination. Many of you will remember Vop as the recent Democratic candidate for the Indiana Secretary of State. He is an individual of immense talent and conviction, and while his recent campaign came up short, his desire to serve has never been stronger. I believe strongly that the stakes are too high to work against one another now, to spend money and human capital against friends in the party when we should be focused on taking our city back from the bankrupt policies and practices of the last four years.

Vop brings to the table the name recognition, experience, and commitment necessary to not only hold this seat on the council, but to inspire voters as we seek to elect Melina Kennedy to the Mayor’s Office next fall. I do not make this decision lightly. I have put countless hours into this race, and many of my dear friends have done so as well, but in supporting Vop, I continue to see my vision for this city realized. His strength as a candidate is undeniable. In Vop, we will have a councilor in the 15th district that will be responsive and committed to act as a voice of the people. I rest assured that as I look to the future, my time of service to the great city of Indianapolis is just beginning, and I am eager to discover in what capacity I can work to make this community stronger as we move forward.

Thank you again for your support.

My very best,
Blake

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