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Elorza Beats Cianci in Providence Mayoral Race

Wednesday, November 05, 2014


Photo: Richard McCaffrey


Democrat Jorge Elorza has won the race for Mayor in the City of Providence, beating two-time former Mayor Vincent "Buddy" Cianci.

With nearly 53% of the vote to Cianci's 43%, the former Housing court judge and Roger Williams University law Professor beat two-time Mayor -- and two-term convicted felon -- Cianci.  Republican Dan Harrop, who announced Monday night he was voting for Elorza, finished a distant third with less than 1000 votes.  

Path to Victory

Elorza had won a tightly contested battle over City Council President Michael Solomon in the Democratic primary on September 9, receiving 10,562 votes (49.3%) against Solomon's 9,190 votes (42.9%) after former opponent Brett Smiley dropped out of the race to support Elorza two weeks prior.

Rhode Island College Professor of Communications Valerie Endress spoke with GoLocal Tuesday night about Elorza's win.  

Jorge Elorza

"He's got to hit the ground running," said Endress of Elorza.  "I'm going back to thinking about Angel Taveras when he won.  He was judged to be competent and well liked by a lot of the voters.  I suspect much of Elorza's win was the "ABC" [Anybody But Cianci] vote."  

"So I think he's got to prove himself.  He's facing problems with Providence, especially budget problems, he's got to prove his competence early. Right now he's known as the anti-Buddy, so I think he's got to show he's got a handle on the issues quickly.  People are going to be looking to see if he deserves the office, and can he mend fences with the Cianci people.  Cianci was a force in the race.  Politicians make mistakes when they ignore their opponent's voter blocks."  


Related Slideshow: Elorza Donors - See 25 Interesting Donors

The election for Mayor of Providence is less than four weeks away. Jorge Elorza raised nearly $200,000 in the latest filing.  See 25 of the most interesting donors to his campaign -- the rich, influential and infamous.

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Chafee & Cicilline Aide

Deb Brayton


Former top aide to Lincoln Chafee and David Cicilline is a big Elorza supporter (following Smiley's exit) and was part of the core group of the failed Anybody But Cianci effort.

She worked for Chafee in DC and came back to RI to serve as Chief of Staff for Cicilline during his tenure that created the City of Providence's fiscal meltdown.

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Alfred Carpionato


Carpionato is the mega developer who is one of the finalists to develop the 195 parcels -- and is the owner of the still yet-to-be developed Fruit and Produce warehouse site in Providence. 

He ranks 17th on GoLocal's list of RI's Richest and Most Influential. 

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Widow of Kim Chace

Elizabeth Chace


The founder of Residential Properties, Liz Chace has been active on reforming John Hope Settlement House - she was a former Board member.

Chace is the widow of billionaire Malcolm 'Kim' Chace III. 

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Michael Corrente


Corrente is a film director. His films include Shot at Glory, American Buffalo, Outside Providence, Brooklyn Rules and Federal Hill.

He was one of the early organizers in the anti-Buddy Cianci group.

Corrente is being sued for $5 million.

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Son of Governor

Dennis DiPrete


DiPrete is the son of former Governor Edward DiPrete. His brother Tom has donated to Cianci.

Dennis is one of the state's most successful engineers and developers.

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Patricia Doyle


Doyle's clients include Twin River Casino, Frank Caprio and the Airport Corporation. She was formerly a partner in RDW Group for a couple of decades.

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Adrain's Campaign Manager

William Foulkes


Foulkes was the campaign manager for Lorne Adrain and a member of the ill-fated Anybody But Cianci group. Foulkes' wife, Helena, is a top executive at CVS and was recently named one of the top women in business in the US by Fortune magazine.

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Aram Garabedian


Garabedian made millions with the malls in Warwick and downtown real estate like the former Amica building.

He was the biggest opponent of the development of the Providence Place Mall.

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Nancy Gilbane


While William Gilbane of the mega-wealthy construction family is doanting and betting on Cianci, Nancy is going for Elorza. The family Gilbane has an estimated wealth of $1.4 billion. 

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Former Top Cicilline Aide

Carol Grant


Former Chief Operating Officer for then-Providence Mayor David Cicilline, Grant was the go-to person in City Hall.

Previously, she had been an executive with Verizon, Textron and now she is with Second Wind.

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Thomas Guerra


While Tom donated to Elorza, his father and visionary behind the transformation of the former Brown & Sharpe complex into the leading live-work environment in the City of Providence - now the Foundry office complex and the Promenade apartments -- donated to Cianci. 

His family made GoLocal's Richest and Most Influential. 

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Former Hosp. President

Constance Howes


The former President of Women and Infants Hospital is now an executive with Care New England. Her husband Kelly Sheridan has ben a lobbyist for everything from the Providence Chamber to big tobacco.

#19 on GoLocal's ranking of the Richest and Most Influential. 

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Chris Hunter


Hunter is lead consultant for the Working Waterfront in Providence - the group is at the forefront of the battle between the pro-industrial users like Sims Metals (Elorza) and the mixed use plans of Cianci. This week the two Mayoral campaigns made charges and counter charges about what is the right plan for Allens Avenue and the Port of Providence. 

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Founder of BIF

Saul Kaplan


Saul Kaplan is emerging as the biggest thought leader in RI. His BIF Summit attracts many of the country and world's biggest thought leaders in business.

His Business Innovation Factory is a business think tank and consulting firm. He is the former EDC director and a business MINDSETTER™ to GoLocalProv.

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Real Estate Mogul

Sally Lapides


Lapides is the CEO at Residential Properties and was one of the organizers of the anti-Cianci group. She is recognized as a leader in the community and a major East Side influencer.

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Set Designer

Eugene Lee


Lee is a Tony Award winning theater designer. He started at Trinity and has designed TV sets for Saturday Night Live and The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.

He has designed many of Trinity's Reps' most elaborate sets.

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Union Leader

Karen McAninch


While police, fire, teachers, Teamsters and city workers' unions have gone with Cianci, McAnnich is one union leader to sign on with Elorza.

She is with the United Service and Allied Workers of RI.

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Beer Distributor

Timothy Moran


Moran's beer distribution company - McLaughlin & Moran - is one of the largest in the region. He has now relocated to Florida.

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Taveras' Lawyer

Thomas Moses


Moses is the boss of the firm Moses & Alfonso - one of the top political firms in the City. Recently, the firm paid a $4.4 million settlement for the firms involvement with 38 Studios. 

The firm has been a strong supporter of sitting Providence Mayor Angel Taveras.

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Former Fleet Bank CEO

J. Terrence and Suzanne Murray


The former CEO of Fleet Bank built the bank into one of the largest in America before selling to Bank of America. The bank has the tenant at the now vacant Superman Building. Murray now lives in Palm Beach, Florida.

While the Murrays lives outside of RI for most of the year, they still ranked #36 in GoLocal's Richest and Most Influential.

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Former GOP Leader

Lila Sapinsley


Once the Minority Leader of the Senate Republicans in the 1980s, Sapinsley has been a leader in the moderate wing of the GOP in RI for years.

She was a regular guest on A Lively Experiment for more than a decade.

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Former BankRI CEO

Merril Sherman


The former BANKRI CEO was once rumored to be a candidate for Mayor of Providence. Sherman has been active in politics and the community. 

She is now a special master in resolving the federal forclosure crisis. She ranks #23 on GoLocal's Richest and Most Influential.

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Former Brown VP

Richard Spies


Spies came to Brown from Princeton and served as the #2 for Ruth Simmons for a decade. He drove the negotiations with Cicilline and Taveras.

Spies continues to live in Providence.

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Former Hasbro

Alfred Verrechia


Verrechia was the longtime executive and ultimately CEO of Hasbro. 

Today, Verrecchia serves on the boards of Iron Mountain, FM Global and Lifespan -- and previously, RIEDC and CVS.

He ranks #20 on GoLocal's Richest and Most Influential. 

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Super Lobbyist

Christopher Vitale


Vitale is a big time lobbyist up at the State House and close ally to former Speaker Gordon Fox. His Capitol City Group represents healthcare and energy clients. 


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