There will be at least one new face on the Tucson City Council by the end of the year.

Four Democrats and one Libertarian are now vying to fill the Ward 3 seat that Councilwoman Karin Uhlich will leave open when she retires later this year.

Uhlich, a Democrat first elected in 2004, is finishing her third term on the council. Last May, she announced that she would not seek re-election for her Ward 3 seat.

Felicia Chew, a teacher at Mansfeld Middle School, was the first to enter the race.

But several others quickly jumped in.

Julian Mazza, a Libertarian, filed paperwork in September.

Morgan Abraham, the co-owner of a real-estate company who led the anti-Prop. 123 campaign early last year, filed his paperwork in late November.

Last week, two more entered the race.

Attorney Paul Durham, a former treasurer of the Pima County Democratic Party, filed to run in the race. In his announcement, Durham said with the election of Donald Trump as president, Tucsonans will need to become more self-reliant.

“With President-elect Trump leading the federal government, we will need to solve our own problems here in Tucson. We need strong local leaders to continue moving our city forward,” said Durham.

Tom Tronsdal, the owner of Canyon Fence Company, announced his run for political office last week.

“The city has seen positive momentum under the leadership of the current City Council and outgoing Councilmember Karin Uhlich,” he said, but there is still much to do.

“We must continue to build on our economic growth, improve public safety, and ensure the concerns of our residents are heard, respected, and addressed,” he said.

To qualify for the Democratic primary, each Democrat will need to gather a minimum of 232 valid signatures from registered Democrats living in Ward 3 Mazza, as a Libertarian, would only need three valid signatures.

The city’s primary election is Aug. 29. The general election is Nov. 7.

Incumbent Councilmembers Steve Kozachik and Richard Fimbres, both Democrats, have filed paperwork to seek another term. As of Friday there were no challengers.

There is a formal challenger to Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, but his term does not expire until 2019.

A Tucson landlord with a long history of fighting Tucson officials, Frank Konarski, filed paperwork late last year to run against Rothschild .

Contact reporter Joe Ferguson at or 573-4197. On Twitter: @JoeFerguson


Reporter with the Arizona Daily Star. I cover politics as well as the city of Tucson and other municipalities in Southern Arizona.