This candidate for Fort Worth mayor has spent nearly $2 million on the election


Mattie Parker out-raised and outspent Fort Worth mayoral opponent Deborah Peoples during the most recent campaign filing period — taking in nearly $750,000 and spending almost $1 million, according to the latest campaign finance reports.

Donors had given Peoples $402,500 during the period, and she maintained about $84,500 in the bank. Her campaign spent a little more than $367,000 during the period.

Parker, 37, a nonprofit executive, and Peoples, 67, a retired AT&T vice president, are vying to replace Mayor Betsy Price, who is not seeking reelection after a decade in office. Early voting runs through June 1, except Memorial Day. Election day is June 5.

Parker had a little more than $265,000 in the bank, according to her campaign filing. Her campaign spent a little less than $972,000 during the filing period.

Among her top donors, Fort Worth billionaire John Goff provided a total of $62,5000 in two separate contributions, along with his wife, Cami, who gave $12,5000. The Good Government Fund and PSEL, political action committees associated with members of the Bass family, both gave $37,500, while the Greater Fort Worth Association of Realtors gave $15,000. The Fort Worth Firefighters’ Association PAC gave $25,000.

“I think our contributions show the overwhelming support that has rallied behind us over the past five months,” Parker said in a prepared statement. “I have stayed focused throughout the campaign on casting a vision for Fort Worth with Fort Worth, and I am proud that the majority of contributions have come from our community here in Fort Worth.”

Both campaigns provided the Star-Telegram with the front page of the most recent campaign reports, which show expense and donation totals. A detailed report for Peoples had not been uploaded to the city’s website at the time this story was published.

In a prepared statement, the Peoples campaign said nearly 3,000 individuals contributed an average of less than $70 each. The small donations were a sign of significant grassroots support, Peoples said in the statement.

“Our campaign is powered by everyday people, and everyday people are exactly who I will look out for as Mayor of Fort Worth,” Peoples said.

The reports are for donations and expenses since April 22.

In the past three filing periods, Parker has raised a total of $1.78 million and spent $1.8 million. Peoples has raised a total of $688,683 over the three periods and spent $605,500.

Candidates in four City Council districts are also in the runoff.

Council District 6

Incumbent council member Jungus Jordan reported a little more than $46,000 in the bank and brought in $137,350 during the period, according to his filing.

His biggest donors were political action committees connected to the police and fire associations. The Fort Worth Police Officers’ Association PAC donated $25,000 while the Firefighters’ Association donated a little more than $22,000.

Support from the Police Officers’ Association created confusion in the general election when the group’s flier endorsing Jordan listed candidates who ran in 2017 and 2019 and left off a candidate running this year.

Jared Williams, a science educator and nonprofit leader, had about $14,500 in the bank from about $25,000 in contributions during the period.

The bulk of his contributions were small donations totaling a few hundred dollars or less, according to the report. Only two donors provided more than $1,000 at a single time: Whitney and Zachary Thompson of Fort Worth, who donated $2,500, and Joseph Jaworski of Galveston, who gave $2,000.

The district includes the southwest part of the city and the new Tarleton State campus.

District 7

Leonard Firestone, co-founder of Firestone & Robertson Distilling Co., had about $67,500 in the bank from about $142,300 in donations during the period.

Fort Worth police and fire PACs donated $10,00 each, as did the Good Government Fund. Goff, who has plans for a luxury hotel, office and residential development in the district on Camp Bowie across the street from the art museums, donated $15,000.

Zeb Pent, who is self-employed, had a little more than $14,600 in the bank and had taken in about $43,500 in contributions during the period.

His largest single donations were $5,000 each from Julia Keyes and Luke and Whitney Pent.

Firestone and Pent are vying for Dennis Shingleton’s seat. He is not seeking reelection to the sprawling district that includes the rapidly growing far northern suburbs and the Cultural District near downtown.

District 8

Incumbent Kelly Allen Gray reported about $50,500 in the bank from about $62,700 in donations during the period. Among large donations, the Firefighters’ Association PAC provided $10,000 and the For the Children PAC provided $7,500.

A report for Chris Nettles, who is self-employed, was not immediately available.

The east side district is home to a number of older neighborhoods including those in the 76104 ZIP code, which has the lowest life expectancy in Texas.

District 9

Elizabeth Beck, a lawyer who ran for the Texas House, and Fernando Peralta, a sergeant in the Texas National Guard and president of the Rosemont neighborhood association, are running to replace Ann Zadeh. Campaign reports were not immediately available for either candidate.

The district includes downtown and diverse south Fort Worth neighborhoods, including the booming Near Southside.

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