City Hall

Race for Angela Hunt's Council Seat Heats Up With Entry of Plan Commissioner Bobby Abtahi

Angela Hunt, the term-limited City Council member representing District 14, has already made it pretty clear whom she favors as her successor. That would be Philip Kingston, a Dallas attorney who entered the race last month and whose campaign treasurer is Paul Sims, aka Mr. Angela Hunt. If you still have any doubt, there's also this:

The field is crowded, however, with Jim Rogers, a founding member of the Bryan Place Neighborhood Association forging ahead with a campaign he launched back in 2011 and Judy Liimatainen, who sits on the board of the Greenland Hills Neighborhood Association. Now, add a fourth name to the mix: Robert "Bobby" Abtahi.

Abtahi, a lawyer and member of the City Plan Commission, officially announced his candidacy this morning, though he has been positioning himself for a run for a while, having penned a Morning News op-ed back in August calling for developers and neighbors to join together in support of a more vibrant city. Outgoing EducateDallas chair Mark Melton will be his treasurer.

In the press materials he passed along this morning, Abtahi touts his work as a community prosecutor with the city of Dallas, collaborating with police, the fire department, code enforcement and neighborhood leaders to tackle crime and blight in southern Dallas, a model he wants to see applied to the whole city.

It's hard to tell, now, who is the establishment candidate for District 14. Kingston has Hunt's backing, but Abtahi boasts the support of several heavy hitters, like former council members Craig Holcomb, Craig McDaniel and Ed Oakley. And Abtahi has at least has the advantage out of the gate, his candidacy -- unlike Philip Kingston's -- was not announced via a legal battle with Avi Adelman.

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Eric Nicholson
Contact: Eric Nicholson