Feb 4, 2016
A Vacancy In Allentown's Democracy
When I ran for office in 2014, I asked Michael Donovan to serve on my vacancy committee, an obscure requirement for independents. He kindly accepted. Michael knew of such things, because he had run the year before as an independent for mayor. Michael and I became acquainted about a decade ago, both as advocates for a better city. Although Michael was a liberal democrat, and I am anything but, we found many common denominators.
While Michael became somewhat critical of the NIZ this past year, as a former city councilman he never regretted voting for it. He believed that it still has the potential for community benefit, to help Allentown's underclass. Until just a few weeks ago, we would often discuss local current events over coffee in the morning. Although he was fighting a progressively aggressive illness, this past summer he made a cross country motor trip to visit his sons.
Michael was a dedicated college professor and a proud father. His optimism and energy, even while fighting cancer, spoke volumes about his character. His passing leaves a void in Allentown's democracy.
photographed at The Epicenter