Government, Politics

Ken Russell Pulls Back the Curtain, Part 1

The former city commissioner shares behind-the-scenes accounts of the redistricting battle, future commission expansion, and his beef with the city attorney.

Former District 2 commission Ken Russell (and Umeboshi) on a recent morning in his Coconut Grove home.

Ken Russell served as the District 2 City of Miami Commissioner, representing Coconut Grove, from 2015 to 2022, leaving office a year early to mount an unsuccessful bid for a U.S. Congressional House seat. Russell sat down recently in his Coconut Grove home with the Spotlight’s David Villano. This week we’ll hear Russell’s thoughts on the district voting map saga, prospects for an expanded commission district, and why he’s no fan of former City Attorney City Mendez. Next week, in the second part of the interview, we’ll learn what influences (and undermines) City of Miami governance and why some of Russell’s key policy initiatives came up short. Questions and answers have been edited for brevity and clarity.

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