Iranian American Candidates on May Ballot in North Texas
Dallas, TX – Two highly successful and qualified Iranian American candidates were on the ballot on Election Day (May 11th) in Texas. Bobby Abtahi, seeking to become the first Iranian American to be elected to the city council of Dallas, received enough votes to qualify for a runoff for the position, while Amir Omar, a member of the city council (Place 7) of Richardson, Texas, fell short in his bid to become Richardson\\\'s mayor and the first Iranian American to become a directly elected mayor.
Bobby Abtahi, Candidate for Dallas City Council - Election results gave Bobby Abtahi, former Dallas Plan Commissioner and former City of Dallas community prosecutor, 26% of the vote in District 14 (which includes parts of downtown and East Dallas as well as Oak Lawn), putting him in second place behind Phillip Kingston, who received 34%. A runoff between Abtahi and Kingston will take place on June 15th.
Born and raised in Dallas, Texas, Abtahi earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas and his JD from SMU Dedman School of Law. After graduating from law school, Abtahi went to work for the city of Dallas as a community prosecutor.
At City Hall, Abtahi worked to help rebuild deteriorating neighborhoods, and was behind a popular program that used the National Guard to tear down drug houses. The program, which is a money-saving initiative that the city continues to use, was recognized by the White House in January 2012 when it presented Abtahi with the MLK Drum Major Award for Community Service. After working for the city, Abtahi started his own private practice but continued to serve Dallas as a member of the city’s plan commission.
Abtahi\\\'s campaign was endorsed by the Real Estate Council of Dallas, the Metro-Tex Association of Realtors, the Home Builders Associations of Greater Dallas, and the AFL-CIO, as well as a number of former city council members and community leaders throughout the city.
Amir Omar, Candidate for Mayor of Richardson, Texas - Meanwhile, Richardson city council member Amir Omar lost his bid for mayor to fellow council member Laura Maczka. Maczka received 71% of the vote to Omar’s 29%.