Eight candidates are in the running for three Manhattan City Commission spots in November.
Rich Vargo, Riley County clerk, said an eighth candidate, Maureen Sheahan, had joined the race before the noon deadline Monday.
Sheahan manages a research laboratory in K-State’s Department of Biochemistry and has lived and worked in the Manhattan area for 40 years. She said she had contemplated running for a long time.
“I’ve lived here a long time and benefited from all the great things Manhattan has given me, so I thought I’d try to give back,” Sheahan said.
Sheahan’s campaign includes equity for citizens through the city’s policies, including through the Riley County Police Department, the city’s taxing system and economic development initiatives.
“The way that we handle some things creates inequities in the way people are dealt with or the resources they have access to or the jobs they have access to,” Sheahan said. “Those things cascade through the system, and I would like to do what I can to level the playing field for people. I would just like to see Manhattan forward, providing as many good opportunities for as many individuals as possible, and not put undue burdens on any class of citizens.”
This is Sheahan’s first time running for public office.
Sheahan joins Aaron Estabrook, Kaleb James, commissioner Linda Morse, Mark Hatesohl, Vincent Tracey, Sarah Siders and Mary Renee Shirk in the race. The other incumbents, Mayor Mike Dodson and commissioner Jerred McKee, said they would not seek re-election.
Estabrook is a business and community liaison at Flint Hills Job Corps. He is a former USD 383 School Board member, serving from 2013 to 2018.
James is a senior business analyst for Maximus. He previously ran for the commission in 2015 and 2017.
Morse is a retired registrar from K-State’s distance education program, and she is a current commissioner. She was elected to a four-year term in 2015.
Hatesohl is a chiropractor and former commissioner and mayor. He was originally voted into office in 2003 and 2005 and lost a 2009 re-election campaign.
Tracey is an information technology specialist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and a U.S. Army retiree. He previously ran for commission in 2009.
Siders owns a private therapy practice at Andrews and Associates Counseling. This is her first time running for public office.
Shirk is a comedian and performer in the community. This is her first time running for public office.
The top two vote-getters in the race will be elected to four-year terms, while the third-place candidate receives a two-year term.
There won’t be a primary.