© 2024 Ideastream Public Media

1375 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44115
(216) 916-6100 | (877) 399-3307

WKSU is a public media service licensed to Kent State University and operated by Ideastream Public Media.
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
To contact us with news tips, story ideas or other related information, e-mail newsstaff@ideastream.org.

Cleveland Mayoral Candidates Raise More Than $1 Million So Far This Year

 The seven candidates for Cleveland mayor at a forum in the West Park neighborhood on July 8. [Nick Castele / Ideastream Public Media]
Justin Bibb, Sandra Williams, Dennis Kucinich, Zack Reed, Basheer Jones, Kevin Kelley and Ross DiBello sit on a stage at a candidate forum in Cleveland, Ohio.

The Cleveland mayoral race is already a million-dollar campaign.

The seven candidates vying to replace Mayor Frank Jackson collectively raised almost $1.1 million over the first half of 2021, according to unaudited campaign finance disclosure reports filed Friday afternoon.

Ward 7 City Councilman Basheer Jones reported raising $362,748 over the last six months – the most in the field. Following him is Justin Bibb, who raised $241,621.

Council President Kevin Kelley brought in $212,816 over the reporting period. But Kelley, who raised a substantial sum last year, entered the month of July with the most money on hand: $537,137.  

Among Kelley’s contributors are Cleveland Browns owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam, who each gave $5,000 – the maximum individual contribution allowed. Kelley also received contributions from several labor unions and political action committees, including $7,500 from the Cleveland firefighters’ union, $5,000 from the Medical Mutual of Ohio PAC and $5,000 from the law firm Kohrman, Jackson and Krantz.

Jones received contributions from donors in various states besides Ohio, including several in Georgia. Jones is a graduate of Morehouse College, the historically Black all-male school in Atlanta. He received $5,000 from Jason Lucarelli of Minute Men Staffing Services, as well as $5,000 each from restaurateurs Tony and Bobby George.

Bibb’s larger contributors include philanthropist and arts advocate Fred Bidwell and Marous Brothers Construction president Adelbert Marous, who each gave $5,000.  

Former Councilman Zack Reed raised $136,526.

State Sen. Sandra Williams raised $96,050.

Former U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich raised $38,387.

Attorney Ross DiBello raised $5,662.

Nick Castele was a senior reporter covering politics and government for Ideastream Public Media. He worked as a reporter for Ideastream from 2012-2022.