By ALISSA SCOTT
The Democratic Committee voted Kenneth Mazur the committee's chairman earlier this week after former chairman Jeffrey Stark decided to step down.
Democratic candidates took a heavy blow in this year's general election and both Mazur, who ran for 1st Ward alderman, and Stark, who ran for Montgomery County District 7 legislator, lost their races.
"Our intention is to meet a little bit more often and coalesce our party," Mazur said. "[We will try to] pick ourselves back up from the last election and see where we stand."
Mazur came to the forefront of contenders and was unanimously voted, a news release said, after Stark announced he would step down following last month's election.
"I asked the members of the city committee what they were looking for in a party chairperson," Mazur said. "We discussed what strengths they wanted and since Jeff had decided to step down, they'd found me to be the next logical person."
Stark, who is also the city's 2nd Ward supervisor, took responsibility for his party's poor performance at the polls. Democrats lost the controller's race and three seats on the Common Council.
After he made the decision days after the election, Stark admitted he could have done more to push his party's candidates, but he has no regrets.
"I worked as hard as I could given the fact that I have a very demanding job," Stark said. "I was busy getting a public club off the ground and I made investments in the city that I needed to renovate. It all came to a head at once. ... You could say maybe I didn't work hard enough given the margin of error, but I had to weigh my life and balance it with my family and community."
Though he said Stark was a "superior" chairman, Mazur said he hopes to boost the party by being more available than Stark was.
"I'm organized and my intention is to bring any fashions in the party together," Mazur said. "We want to meet more often and my availability is such that that's possible. Jeff was not always able to call meetings as often as we would have liked."
Mazur said he was honored when he was selected at the party's meeting this week and he's anxious to get his feet wet.
"I admire Jeff for his dedication to the Democratic Party and thank him for his service," Mazur said. "Looking forward, I'm excited to do what I can to help the party and the city in the next election."
Mazur said his first meeting as chairman is coming up next month and he'll be able to share more information then.
Stark said he wishes Mazur luck.
"Its a tough and thankless job," Stark said. "I wish Ken the best of luck."
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