Running to succeed the retiring John Sharpe James in the South Ward Council seat, Pat Council last night received 1,762 votes, or 45.6%, while Terrance Bankston received 683 votes or 17.9%. The fact that neither received 50% plus one in the crowded field now requires them to face each other in a runoff election on June 14th.
Today, Bankston said he’s ready, as he attempts to pull off an upset and defeat Council, who has the backing of Mayor Ras Baraka.
“I’d like to thank everyone for supporting me,” said Bankston. “I am thrilled to see that the residents of Newark have spoken and is ready for change! 55% said NO to the MAYOR’s handpicked, rubber stamp, councilmember hopeful. The mighty South Ward came out and voted for me against the machine. They voted against business as usual because ‘Time’s Up!’ That’s what this runoff represents!
“The job is not done yet,” he added. “We cannot elect another surrogate! We need a leader..not a puppet! The guns, garbage, rats and raccoons must go! So, let’s get fired up! There is still one more hurdle in our path to victory! We must double down and take the South Ward at the runoff election on Tuesday, June 14, 2022. Let’s keep building the momentum and hit those polls hard!”
Bankston said he is seeking to be elected South Ward Councilperson because he’s the most qualified. He has been a Community Leader, Education Advocate and Environmental Justice Organizer for over two decades. A lifelong resident of the city of Newark with firm roots in the community, he is a father, a homeowner, a small business owner, and a mentor to youth. He served in five directorships. Between 2009 and 2013, he served as the Director of the Newark Youth One Stop Career Center.
“We increased the literacy rate of program participants (ages 14 – 24) by double digits,” Bankston noted.
Additionally, under his leadership, federal audits yielded the highest marks for fiscal responsibility, than in the previous 20 years, he said.
From 2006 to 2009, he served as the Director of Constituent Affairs for the City of Newark, where he created the first ever Newark Constituent Services guide; implementing and orchestrating the Mayor’s open office hours program; and the Mayor’s mobile job tour initiative.
More recently, Bankston served as the Director for Student Leadership and Engagement and Special Programs at Bloomfield College, and now serves as the Environmental Justice Organizer for Clean Water Action/Clean Water Fund in New Jersey.