by Greg Damiano
Special to LBReport.com
(April 14, 2004) -- 38-year-old high school teacher Patrick O'Donnell attributes his victory over 4th district Council incumbent Dennis Carroll to a door-to-door campaign that started in November.
"I talked to voters, I listened to them," he said, "and it seems like they want a City Council that listens."
This election marked O'Donnell's entry into public politics. He earned his masters in public administration from the California State University at Long Beach.
"As I watched what was happening with the city and the district I became
frustrated," he said.
O'Donnell adopted a platform promoting public safety and youth
programs, and opposing airport expansion. Chats with like-minded neighbors soon blossomed into the grassroots campaign that won him the election.
For all the blows traded on the campaign trail, O'Donnell was feeling good as the final votes came in late Tuesday night, surrounded by family and friends.
"They're the people I grew up with," he said of the volunteers who
contributed to his campaign.
The official results of Tuesday's elections will be announced on April 26 and the winner will take office in July.
Councilman-elect O'Donnell said he would continue to teach in addition to the City Council
position. Most specifically he had three plans for immediate execution the day after the election:
- He said he would call everyone who supported him at the polls.
- He said he would call everyone who opposed him.
- Finally, he said he was looking forward to taking a walk.
"I'm going to take my daughter in a red wagon around the neighborhood
that helped me into office," he said.