Only one Uptown-area lawmaker draws challengers


One Uptown-based lawmaker will face three opponents in his newly drawn district in the Oct. 22 election, while the rest of the area’s legislative delegation appears likely to return to Baton Rouge without a re-election fight.

Incumbent state Rep. Neil Abramson, a Democrat, drew one Republican challenger, “Fenn” French, and two challengers from his own party, Myron Katz and Evan Wolf, after qualifying ended Thursday afternoon. French is a retail developer and business partner to former City Councilman Jay Batt as well as former Congressman Joe Cao’s campaign manager. Katz, an energy consultant, ran for Congress against U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise last fall, and Wolf ran in 2007 for in the Carrollton-based District 95 that existed prior to redistricting.

No one qualified to run against the four other state legislators who represent parts of Uptown after this year’s redistricting efforts: state Reps. Walt Leger in District 91 and Helena Moreno in District 93, and state Sens. Karen Carter Peterson in District 5 and Conrad Appel in District 9.

Although Abramson is an incumbent, much of his district is new to him after redistricting. District 98 previously ran along the downtown side of Audubon Park, through Broadmoor and nearly to Mid-City. After redistricting, it now retains the Audubon and Broadmoor pieces, but spreads upriver through Carrollton and downriver to Napoleon Avenue, while losing the Central City and Mid-City precincts.

Other contested seats in the fall election will be both seats on the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education that represent parts of Uptown and four judicial races. A complete list of contested local seats representing Uptown New Orleans follows:

  • House District 98 (covering Carrollton, Audubon and Uptown) | incumbent Neil Abramson (D), “Fenn” French (R), Myron Katz (D), Evan Wolf (D)
  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education District 1 (the Audubon/University area, into Jefferson Parish) | Lee Barrios (No Party) of Abita Springs, incumbent Jim Garvey (R) of Metairie, Sharon Hewitt (R) of Slidell
  • Board of Elementary and Secondary Education District 2 (most of Uptown and Orleans Parish) | incumbent Louella P. Givens (D) of Mandeville, Pam Matus (No Party) of LaPlace, Kira Orange Jones (D) of New Orleans, Ferdinand Wallace Jr. (D) of Reserve.
  • Civil District Court, Division B | Regina Bartholomew (D), Ellen Hazeur (D)
  • Civil District Court, Division E | Nakisha Ervin-Knott (D), Clare Jupiter (D), Kris Kiefer (D)
  • Criminal District Court, Section L | Willard J. Brown (D), Donald Sauviac Jr. (R), Glen A. Woods (D), Franz Zibilich (D)
  • Traffic Court, Division A | Herbert Cade (D), Ernest F. Charbonnet (D), Patrick Giraud (D)

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