Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Zellers, Ellingson will represent District 2, 13 downtown

Zellers looks to the future and hopes to preserve the history in the Langdon neighborhood.[/media-credit]

Community leader Ledell Zellers will become the new representative on City Council for District 2 after defeating her opponent, Bryan Post, with 51.7 percent of the vote.

Zellers said one of her first priorities as an alder will be establishing good channels of communication within the district.

“I want to figure out how people want to communicate,” Zellers said. “I want to hear what people have to say [and] hear what they want me to know about.”


Communication is important because of the diversity of the district, she said. District 2 is composed of housing cooperatives, fraternities and sororities, renters and homeowners, she said.

For the last four years, Ald. Bridget Maniaci has represented District 2, which extends from the downtown core to the Tenney-Lapham neighborhood on the city’s east side. Zellers has been a vocal critic of Maniaci’s tenure; Maniaci endorsed her opponent, Post. 

Continuing the economic development of East Washington Avenue is another major initiative Zellers said she plans to focus on. The redevelopment of the 800 block of the street is of particular importance to her because the density of the proposed development will help support businesses in the area, she said.

“It’s a gateway to our city,” Zellers said. “We need to keep the momentum going.”

Zellers said communication with many residents in the Langdon Street area was one of the factors that most likely contributed to her win. Visits to the many UW fraternities and sororities were an important part of her campaign, she added.

Many people in the Langdon neighborhood were upset with recently-approved plans to redevelop buildings on Iota Court, Zellers said. Residents felt they were not informed about the development early enough and their concerns were not heard, she said.

“They should have gotten that information,” Zellers said. “[It] bothers me when people don’t have information that is going to potentially impact their living circumstances.”

Zellers added she will bring hard work, enthusiasm and ideas to the position.

Post, a University of Wisconsin alumnus, works for the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. He came in second in the election and said he will continue to work for DPW and will pursue positions on different city committees.

He said he has spoken with Zellers about the future of the district. Post values the relationships he made while campaigning and with the people he met in the neighborhood. He stressed the importance of continuing to grow the city.

Post said he had planned to focus on creating affordable housing, transportation and improving safety around campus.

Nathan Germain, a UW graduate student studying French, was a strong supporter of Post throughout the campaign. He said Post successfully represented the views of many under-represented groups in the district.

“He really represents the views of the district,” Germain said. “It’s a diverse district, so he represents students, young professionals, grad students and renters.”

District 13, the area that surrounds the Edgewood College campus, was the other student area with a contested election. The incumbent, Sue Ellingson, won the election while Edgewood student Zach Madden came in second.

In a previous interview with The Badger Herald, Ellingson said in her next term as alder, she will focus on improving walkability, traffic safety and neighborhood revitalization.

“There are hard problems to solve,” she said. “I’m going to keep plugging away.”

She said she will continue developing the neighborhood and pursuing development projects.

Madden said the campaign has been a positive experience. He said as a member of City Council, he wanted to work on improving pedestrian safety and increasing affordable housing in the district.

He said improving traffic safety for pedestrians would create incentives for people to walk and bike in Madison.

“These are issues the city needs to get serious about,” he said.

The most senior member of City Council, Ald. Tim Bruer, District 14, lost his seat in the election to newcomer John Strasser. Ald. Mike Verveer, District 4, is now the most senior member of City Council. He won re-election in an uncontested race. 

Verveer said the most pressing issue the city of Madison will face in the next year is the annual city budget. He added City Council will have to work hard in order to maintain the high quality of services the city provides to the community.

He said a quarter of City Council will be new members, and he is excited to work with the new alders.

“I look forward to working with the new council, which I will predict will be more politically progressive than the previous council,” Verveer said.

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