Who Is Running for Philadelphia Mayor in 2023?

Four Philadelphia City Council members and a city controller have resigned with the idea of running for mayor in 2023. Other prospective candidates are pondering campaigns as well in what will be a large field of contenders in the May primary next year.

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The field of hopefuls vying to become Philadelphia's 100th mayor, and succeed Mayor Jim Kenney, is beginning to emerge more than a year before the November 2023 election.

A former city controller and four City Council members have already resigned their seats, with three officially declaring their intent to run for mayor and another pondering a run. Other council members could also quit their posts to jump into the race while some private citizens are also considering mayoral campaigns.

Philadelphia elected officials must resign to run for mayor, according to a rule in the city's Home Rule Charter. Meanwhile, Kenney can't run for a third term.

Here's a look at the candidates who have officially declared their candidacy and prospective candidates who are believed to be exploring a run. This list will be updated as the field expands.

Warren Bloom, Democrat

Bloom is a minister for Bible Ministries Fellowship Church and an acting committee member from Ward 6, Division 5. He has sought office several times in the past. He unsuccessfully ran for Democrat City Commissioner in 2003, 2007, 2011 and 2019.

He also lost a run for State Representative in 195th District in 2013. And, in 2016, he lost a bid for the office of Traffic Court Judge. Bloom's campaign biography says he volunteers for local youth leadership mentorship programs and is a professional drummer and singer.

Amen Brown, Democrat

Brown has been a member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives serving part of Philadelphia County since 2021. The Democrat, father and West Philly native says he’s running because the city needs a new direction.

“I have developed relationships on both side of the aisle to bring money to my district, instead of focusing on division,” Brown told a crowd at his announcement. Brown says crime is the number one issue in Philadelphia and he would work to bring all parts of the government together on the issue. This fall, he sat on the Republican-led House Committee investigating Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner. The 35-year-old said his lived experiences set him apart, including being shot and arrested as a teenager.

Jeff Brown, Democrat

Brown is the first government-outsider to join the race. The fourth-generation Philadelphian is the CEO of Brown’s Super Stores Inc., which operates about a dozen ShopRites and two Fresh Grocers in and around Philadelphia.

Brown was one of the most prominent opponents to Mayor Jim Kenney’s soda tax, WHYY reported in 2019.

Jimmy DeLeon, Democrat

DeLeon is a retired Philadelphia judge who retired from Municipal Court last year after 34 years. In that time he served as a supervising judge of the criminal division. DeLeon works as an attorney, but also distinguishes himself as a public policy thought leader, author and a member of the U.S. Coast Guard.

His campaign says he aims to move "Philadelphia and its traumatized citizens toward hope, peace, and prosperity."

Allan Domb, Democrat

Domb is one of Center City's top developers over the last few decades, and was dubbed "the Condo King" years ago before he first ran for Council. He shocked friends and political observers alike when he announced his initial run for Council in 2015.

His wealth and clout with some of the city's most affluent residents have made him a formidable politician since his entry into Council chambers.

Delscia Gray, Democrat

Little is known about Grey or her campaign at the moment. She seems to have no website or contact information available.

However, she is listed as a Democratic candidate in the upcoming mayoral race, on the City's official list of candidates who have filed petitions.

Helen Gym, Democrat

Gym is a former at-large councilmember, schoolteacher and community organizer. She is the first Asian American woman to serve on Philadelphia's City Council body and the first Asian American Democrat elected to citywide office in 50 years, according to her Council biography.

In recent years, she has become one of the most prominent liberal voices in City Council, which in turn has helped raise her profile among the city’s overwhelmingly Democratic electorate. She was the top vote getter among Council members who ran in 2019.

David Oh, Republican

Oh served at-large on Philadelphia City Council from 2011 to 2023. He had to resign his seat to run for mayor.

Oh, who was in his third term, addressed the decision not to run for another council term saying: “I don’t think that in one more additional term I could do enough to justify running,” and saying as mayor he could address the things he was unable to do as a council member. 

Cherelle Parker, Democrat

Parker has a long public career, having served in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives for 10 years before being elected to Council in 2015. She was the youngest Black woman ever elected to the House in 2005. She represented the 9th Council District, which includes neighborhoods in Northwest and Northeast Philadelphia.

She quickly rose to Council majority leader in her second term.

Rebecca Rhynhart, Democrat

Rhynhart became the first woman to be elected as city controller, a job she began in 2018.

Before being elected controller, she had financial roles as City Treasurer and Budget Director, according to her campaign's website. She is a "proud public-school parent."

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