More local political excitement as former Antioch Mayor Harper pulls papers in comeback attempt

Wade Harper announces campaign for Mayor of Antioch on July 20, 2020. Video screenshot of Facebook Live that has since been removed.

By Allen Payton

Today, Monday, July 20, 2020 former Antioch Mayor Wade Harper took out Nomination Papers to run for mayor, according to a video posted on Facebook. In the video he says “I think I did a great job as mayor” and that he will make an official announcement later.

Harper was elected mayor in 2012 but lost for re-election to current Mayor Sean Wright by just 64 votes in a three-way race in 2016 that included Councilwoman Lori Ogorchock. If all candidates who have taken open papers file, Harper and Wright will also face Antioch Councilwoman Monica Wilson and two others who are new to the Antioch political scene.

Harper started his time in public office by being appointed to the Antioch School Board in January 2009, to fill the vacancy left by the death of longtime board member Joyce Seelinger. Instead of running for election to that seat in 2010  he ran for Antioch City Council, placing first ahead of the late Gary Agopian, and earning the title of Mayor Pro Tem.

He then chose to run for mayor in 2012, beating fellow Councilman Agopian and former Antioch Mayor Don Freitas.

An effort launched in January 2015 to recall Harper was unsuccessful because the supporters did not gather enough valid signatures to qualify for the ballot.

Harper then ran for County Supervisor in District 3, also against Wilson, in June 2016. He placed fourth out of six candidates in that race, which resulted in the election of Diane Burgis that November.

A former Tracy Police Lieutenant, Harper is an ordained minister,  published author of the book entitled “Annointed for Leadership” according to one of his Facebook pages, and married to Lisa Harper. His Antioch Mayor Facebook page from Harper’s term is up and can still be viewed.

According to Antioch City Clerk Arne Simonsen, more candidates for city offices are expected to pull nomination papers, today and he will provide another, daily update after city offices close at 5:00 p.m.


the attachments to this post:

Wade Harper announcement 7-20-20

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