Archive for Sunday, December 20, 1998


December 20, 1998


The deadline for filing as a candidate for Lawrence City Commission is five weeks away, with the general election set for April 6.

With the filing deadline five weeks away, several Lawrence residents are lining up as candidates for three Lawrence City Commission seats up for grabs this spring.

Although G. Wayne Parks, a retired farmer, production-line worker and fence builder, remains the only formal candidate, several others are getting ready to make their runs official -- or at least determine whether they will enter the race at all.

Brenda McFadden, a downtown accountant, said she likely would file by year's end. Jim Henry, a retired Kansas University administrator, is mulling his options, and several others -- David Dunfield, an architect for Glenn Livingood Penzler Architects, Mary Gray, a backer of public transportation efforts, and Denise Gibson, a social worker -- are said to be considering runs.

As of now, however, officials at city hall are awaiting formal documents. So far they've sent out about 20 packets to interested individuals, including KU students and others from various areas of town, said Ray Hummert, city clerk.

Three commission seats are up for election April 6; a primary would be conducted March 2 if more than six candidates enter the race. The filing deadline is noon Jan. 26 at city hall.

Commissioner John Nalbandian, a two-time former mayor, is not seeking re-election, and Commissioners Bonnie Augustine and Bob Moody are not expected to run again.

McFadden, 34, has been accounting from her office at 925 Vt. since 1985. Today she owns McFadden and Associates, with a staff of five.

While downtown's continued health will be a main issue for her campaign, McFadden has yet to draw any conclusions.

"I don't have any specific agenda," McFadden said. "I'm not going into this with any specific agenda or anything I want to push through. It's just to maintain Lawrence and keep it what it is."

Henry acknowledged being "approached" by friends and supporters to run for commissioner, but has yet to make a decision. He expects to make a formal announcement soon after Jan. 1.

A Lawrence resident for 31 years, Henry graduated from KU and later worked as an assistant registrar. He moved on to the University Placement Center, from which he retired in July 1997 as associate director.

"I am seriously considering it," Henry said Friday. "I'm not in the position of making any statements yet."

Dunfield served until Wednesday as chair of the Lawrence Association of Neighborhoods, and currently is working as project architect for the city's proposed $5.8 million renovation and expansion of the Lawrence Arts Center, 200 W. Ninth. He has discussed his possible candidacy with a variety of officials, and many believe he will enter the race.

-- Mark Fagan's phone message number is 832-7188. His e-mail address is

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