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Meet The Candidates In the 2012 Ward 8 D.C. Council Race

Marion Barry is a D.C. Council member representing Ward 8. Barry served as the second elected Democratic mayor of D.C. from 1979 to 1991. He was later reelected as the fourth D.C. mayor from 1995 to 1999. Barry also served two other tenures on the D.C. Council, once as an At-Large member from 1975 to 1979, and as Ward 8 representative from 1992 to 1995. Before returning to the D.C. Council, Barry worked as a consultant for an investment banking firm. In addition to his drug arrest, Barry pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor for failing to pay federal and local taxes. Despite his legal issues, Barry has maintained his popularity in the city. The Washington City Paper nicknamed him “Mayor-for-Life,” and the Washington Post once said, “to understand the District of Columbia, one must understand Marion Barry.” Barry grew up in Memphis, Tenn. He graduated from LeMoyne College in 1958, and then went on to earn a Master’s degree in organic chemistry at Fisk University. After Fisk, Barry joined the American civil rights movement. He served as the first chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, and moved to Washington, D.C. in 1965 to open a local chapter.

Jacque D. Patterson is a candidate D.C. Council member in Ward 8. He is a former managing director for the Federal City Council, a nonprofit advocating for affordable housing, government operations, education, and public safety in D.C. Prior to that, Patterson served as community affairs coordinator in the Executive Office of the Mayor. Patterson began his work in public service as a Capital City fellow assigned to the Office of Tax and Revenue. Patterson joined the military upon graduating from high school, where he earned a bachelor's degree in workforce development and a master's degree in public administration. Patterson was honorably discharged after 14 years of active duty and enlisted in the Air Force Reserves. He currently holds the rank of Senior Master Sergeant, and resides with his family in the Shipley Terrace neighborhood of Ward 8.

Darrell Danny Gaston is a candidate for D.C. Council member in Ward 8. He is currently in his second term as Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner 8B. Gaston was elected in 2008 during the general election and then reelected in 2010. He supports education, health care, and roadways and parks. Gaston grew up in Ward 8's Sheridan Terrance Community and graduated from Friendship Collegiate Academy Public Charter High School. He attended Coppin State University and graduated with a bachelor's degree in political science.



Natalie Williams is a candidate for D.C. Council member in Ward 8. She's a former senior staff member with the Council of the District of Columbia, and also served as a senior staffer for the D.C. Board of Education, working to improve the quality of public education for students in the District. Williams studied vocal music at the Duke Ellington School of the Performing Arts, as well as Virginia State University. She graduated from Trinity College. Williams has an 8-year-old daughter and is a member of the Ward 8 Democrats.



S.S. Sandra Seegars is a candidate for the D.C. Council member in Ward 8. She currently serves as Neighborhood Advisory Commissioner for 8E. She attended Ballou High School in Washington, D.C. and graduated from Howard University. Seegars is the founder and organizer of the Ward Eight Council Against Domestic Violence and is a member of the Ward 8 Democrats.

The District of Columbia's April 3 primary election includes presidential, congressional and Council seats. In the D.C. Council races, there will be elections for an at-large member, and members representing Wards 2,4,7 and 8. In Ward 2, Jack Evans is running unopposed so we will not preview that race. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. - 8 p.m. Find out where to vote and check your registration status. The D.C. Board of Elections & Ethics has general information about all of Tuesday's races. 

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