Paul Cunningham, a Pima County juvenile probation officer since December 1999, was appointed by the Tucson City Council by a 6-0 vote tonight to the vacant Ward 2 Council seat. Democrat Dr. Rodney Glassman resigned that seat on April 6 to run for U.S. Senate.
Councilmember Regina Romero made the nomination stating that Paul was the “most qualified and eligible candidate.”
According to the Tucson Charter, a successor to a Councilmember needed to receive four affirmative votes by the Mayor/Council to be appointed. The replacement did not have to belong to the same political party as the Councilmember he/she replaced, and will serve for the unexpired term, till December 2011.
Ten other applicants had vied for this vacancy (click here for my earlier April 27 article). Four Democrats, five Republicans, and two Independents in total were found eligible to apply, all residents/voters of Ward 2. Fourteen in total originally applied by the deadline of April 20, but then one withdrew and two were found ineligible thereafter.
Cunningham is 1st Vice President (Program chair) of Democrats of Greater Tucson
and son of George Cunningham, former LD 13 State House Rep. and Senator, who also worked in the cabinets of Governor Rose Mofford and Governor Janet Napolitano. Paul has been a precinct committeeman of his east-side precinct for four years, and also served in 2009 as Vice President of Saguaro Eastside Democrats.
He has a B.A. in History from the University of Arizona and his M.S.W. from ASU. He was also the founder of the now defunct “Team Tucson” youth empowerment and advocacy movement in 2005 to 2007. He is currently serving as Chairman of CLUB services, a youth empowerment program, which has established a “Hoop Dreams” curriculum.
He indeed comes from a political family being son of George Cunningham aforementioned, but he is also the grandson of retired Superior Court Judge Lillian Fisher, and nephew of Justice of the Peace Anne Segal, who is up for re-election in Precinct One this year.
Paul is also the President of the El Gheko Neighborhood Association, and served in the U.S. Army National Guard as a combat medical specialist from 1992 to 2001. He is married and father of two sons.
Congratulations Paul Cunningham, and good luck with the City budget.