Mayoral Election 2017
By Alex and Lindsey Diamond
2017 holds an important election for the city of Allentown. Residents of the City of Allentown will have the choice of many different candidates to be the Democratic and Republican Party candidates for Mayor of Allentown.
Edward “Mayor Ed” Pawlowski
The current Mayor of Allentown has been in office since 2006 and has spent his time in office revitalizing downtown via the Neighborhood Improvement Zone construction program that has given the city a hockey stadium. He says that crime has consistently gone down and property taxes have remained steady in the time he has been in office. Pawlowski is broadly popular but is often considered corrupt due to scandals that have occurred during his time in office.
The City Council President was active in education for many years as a principal and administrator and has focused his campaign on the needs of the youth. He wants to encourage young people to become police and firefighters and work with the school district on programs for young people. O’Connell also would want to pass ethical reforms and make it harder for city politicians to accept gifts.
A recent graduate of Seton Hall University; Siegel is a newcomer to Allentown but has lived in Bethlehem and Philipsburg in the past. He is campaigning on financial transparency and will make financial records more easily accessible.
Siobhan “Sam” Bennett
A businesswoman and frequent candidate for public office; Bennett wants to institute many reforms including mayoral term limits, campaign finance limits, and transparency. She advocates for reform efforts within the city and tends to take a progressive platform.
Worked for Communications Systems, Inc., where he progressed to the position of Vice President. Thiel currently holds the current position of the Allentown Chamber of Commerce and is involved in many boards pertaining to Allentown, such as the Allentown School District Foundation, the Allentown Community Development Advisory Board, etc.Thiel is primarily affiliated with the Democratic party and prioritizes safe and clean neighborhoods, improving public safety, job opportunities, and an honest government and fair taxes.
Jones works as a Lehigh County Commissioner and has more than 20 years experiences in business and nonprofit services such as the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative in the Lehigh County within the church he is a pastor in, New Vision Church in Bethlehem. Jones is affiliated with the Democratic Party and prioritizes restoring trust within city government.
Nathan Woodring, a bus driver from Allentown, is a Democrat whose main goal is to address the corruption among city officials if he is elected. Woodring also wants to challenge the city’s hiring process, such as Allentown City Council increasing its’ role in the process to keep choosing city employees a fair process. Woodring previously ran for mayor in 2005 as a Republican, but switched to the Democratic Party because he sees is as an easier passage to get into office.
Although Salisbury residents can’t vote in the Mayoral election, it is important that they keep an interest as Allentown is a major hub near Salisbury Township.