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17 public advocate candidates will appear on special election ballot

There are no primaries and the candidates are running on party lines that they created.

The public advocate special election will be on

The public advocate special election will be on Feb. 26. Photo Credit: Getty Images/John Moore

New York City voters will elect a new public advocate in February, filling a role left vacant by new state Attorney General Letitia James. 

More than 20 candidates filed petitions to be on the ballot, but after a review period, the BOE determined that 17 met the requirements.

Scroll down to find out who will be on the ballot, as well as more details about the special election. 

When is the election?

The special election will be on Tuesday, Feb. 26. Only registered voters can participate.

How does the election work?

There are no primaries and the candidates are running on party lines that they created.

Anyone who submitted the necessary paperwork and a petition with at least 3,750 valid signatures by Jan. 14 will be on the ballot. The 17 candidates who met the requirements will appear on the ballot in the order that they filed their petitions.

Who are the candidates?

The following are the candidates and their party lines.

Manny Alicandro (Better Leaders)

Alicandro is an attorney, who ran unsuccessfully for New York attorney general. 

Michael Blake (For the People)

Blake is an Assembly member, representing Morrisania, Claremont and other parts of the Bronx.

David Eisenbach (Stop REBNY)

Eisenbach is a history professor at Columbia University. He ran unsuccessfully for public advocate in 2017. 

Rafael Espinal Jr. (Livable City)

Espinal is a City Council member, representing Bushwick, Cypress Hills and other parts of Brooklyn.

Anthony Herbert (Residents First)

Herbert is a community activist who has worked for a City Council member, a congressman and the State Senate. 

Ron Kim (No Amazon)

Kim is an Assembly member, representing Flushing and other parts of Queens.

Nomiki Konst (Pay Folks More)

Konst is an investigative journalist and activist.

Melissa Mark-Viverito (Fix the MTA)

Mark-Viverito is the former City Council speaker, who represented parts of the South Bronx and upper Manhattan. 

Daniel O'Donnell (Equality For All)

O'Donnell is an Assembly member, representing the Upper West Side and other parts of upper Manhattan. 

Jared Rich (Jared Rich for NYC)

Rich is an attorney. 

Ydanis Rodriguez (Unite Immigrants)

Rodriguez is a City Council member, representing Inwood and other parts of upper Manhattan.

Helal Sheikh (Friends of Helal)

Sheikh is a teacher and community activist who ran unsuccessfully for City Council in 2017.

Dawn Smalls (No More Delays)

Smalls is an attorney who worked in the Obama and Clinton administrations.

Eric Ulrich (Common Sense)

Ulrich is a City Council member, representing Ozone Park, Howard Beach, Rockaway Park and other parts of Queens.

Latrice Walker (Power Forward)

Walker is an Assembly member, representing Brownsville and parts of Crown Heights and Bed-Stuy. Though her name will be on the ballot, she ended her campaign after she did not make the first official debate. She asked the BOE to take her name off the ballot, but her request was denied.

Jumaane Williams (It's Time Let's Go)

Williams is a City Council member, representing Flatbush, Midwood and other parts of Brooklyn. He also ran unsuccessfully for lieutenant governor in 2018. 

Benjamin Yee (Community Strong)

Lee is an activist and the vice president of the national Young Democrats of America. 

Candidates who had filed, but did not make the ballot after review of the petitions are Theo Chino, Ifeoma Ike, Walter Iwachiw, Danniel Maio, Gary Popkin and Michael Zumbluskas.

When are the debates?

Feb. 6: The first televised public advocate debate will be on Feb. 6 at 7 p.m. at the CUNY-TV studio in Manhattan. To participate, the candidates had to be on the ballot, have raised and spent at least $56,938 and filed their campaign finance disclosure statement by Jan. 25.

Ten of the candidates met the threshold: Blake, Espinal, Kim, Konst, Mark-Viverito, O'Donnell, Rodriguez, Smalls, Ulrich and Williams.

Feb. 20: The second and final official debate will be on Feb. 20 at 7 p.m. at the Borough of Manhattan Community College. To be eligible for participation, the candidates must have raised and spent $170,813 and file their disclosure statement by midnight on Feb. 15. They also must have received an endorsement from an elected official who represents all or part of the city or from at least one NYC organization with more than 250 members.

Here's how you can watch the debates.

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