Former D.C. Superior Court Magistrate Judge Lori Parker is campaigning on ensuring all Ward 1 residents benefit from its recent prosperity. She is challenging D.C. Council member Brianne Nadeau (D-Ward 1) for her seat to make that happen.

“The status quo isn’t working. Right now, constituent services aren’t a priority and far too many Ward 1 residents go with their issues unresolved,” Parker, a third-generation Washingtonian, said. “I want to make local government work better for all of us. As an experienced leader who has worked in the judicial, executive, and legislative branches of District government, I know how to get to what needs to be done. As a council member, listening to Ward 1 residents will be my top priority. I will bring the strong leadership, quality constituent services, responsive government, new ideas, passion, and compassion that all District residents and businesses deserve.”

Prospective D.C. Council member Lori Parker is a former D.C. Superior Court Magistrate Judge. (Courtesy photo)

Parker holds a bachelor’s degree from Columbia University (1986) and a law degree from the George Washington University School of Law (1989), and a master’s degree in developmental psychology from the John Hopkins University (1999). She attended Madeira, an independent boarding and day high school for girls, in McLean, Va.

Parker served as a magistrate from 2005-2016 and was elected an advisory neighborhood commissioner in Ward 1 in 2004 and in Ward 4 in 1992 and 1994. She also served as the interim deputy mayor for children, youth, families, and elders, and the mayor’s liaison to the D.C. Superior Court Family Court with the Anthony Williams mayoral administration. She has worked for the D.C. Council as a lawyer on the Committee of the Judiciary.

Parker joins a race that includes Nadeau, who announced her re-election bid earlier this year, and Ward 1 advisory neighborhood commissioner Kent Boese. All three of the candidates are seeking the Democratic Party nod, with the primary set to take place on June 19, 2018.

Parker is the only African American in the race.

Ward 1 is 48 percent White, 32 percent Black, 20 percent Latino, and four percent Asian, according to Suburban Stats. The Ward is geographically located in the middle of the District. It consists of Howard University’s main campus and the popular U Street, N.W. as well as Latino-oriented Mount Pleasant and Adams Morgan.

Parker, in an interview with the AFRO, said that in addition to improving constituent services, she will work for long-term solutions to the ward’s problems through legislation and policy as well as promote greater engagement among the residents. She said her campaign will be “people-oriented.”

“This is a campaign of inclusiveness, a campaign of the people,” she said. “This is a ward on the rise but way too many people feel left out.”

Parker said she will advocate for more seniors to age-in-place or stay in their homes as they get older instead of moving into nursing or senior living buildings. She said newer residents to the ward should have the chance to afford a three-bedroom apartment, condo, or house and not have to move out of the ward for that. “We don’t want people to come to Ward 1 when they come into the city and move to other places afterward,” she said. “We want them to stay in Ward 1 and contribute to the community.”

Parker said she will pay attention to the needs of veterans and returning citizens and support local businesses whether they are new or have been in the ward for years. She wants to help community organizations that help Ward 1 residents stay in the ward with their rising rents, too.

Stanley Mayes represents Ward 1 on the D.C. Democratic State Committee. Mayes supports Nadeau and thinks Parker has an uphill battle. “You don’t have a large anti-Nadeau faction in the ward,” Mayes told the {AFRO}. “She doesn’t have a smooth road ahead even though I wish her well. Considering the voting patterns in this ward, she needs to show me where her voters are.”