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Megan Green defeats Jack Coatar for Board of Aldermen president

Green defeated Alderman Coatar in the special election to determine who would fill the remainder of the former board president Lewis Reed’s term.

ST. LOUIS — Alderwoman Megan Green, a progressive educator, will be the president of the St. Louis Board of Aldermen for the next five months.

Green defeated Alderman Jack Coatar in the special election to determine who would fill the remainder of the former board president Lewis Reed’s term. Federal prosecutors charged former President Lewis Reed with corruption for taking bribes from developers in exchange for passing tax incentives to help their bottom line.

Shortly before the final votes were tallied, Green declared victory and Coatar conceded at their respective election night parties.

For full election results throughout the night, click here.

The position will be up for grabs again in the 2023 municipal election. The winner of that race will serve a four-year term.

Green rallied progressive activists to demand the resignation of former Board of Aldermen President Lewis Reed. Green’s public calls for Reed to resign placed her at the forefront of calls to clean up corruption in city government, and in the middle of renewed debate about scrutinizing the use of public funds for private development.

Green linked her opponent to Reed’s inner circle and said she was “appalled” at perceived conflicts Coatar had with some of his law firm’s clients.

Green combatted Coatar’s attacks on public safety by highlighting how many law enforcement officers St. Louis already has on the force, highlighting the department’s poor rate at solving murders and the amount of time officers spend addressing violent crime. Her public safety plan calls for greater funding for affordable housing and remaking the city budget to build out social supports and “non-police emergency response systems.”

Green has been steeped in city politics and has more experience in city-wide races. Voters may be more familiar with her after she previously ran for Board of Aldermen President and finished 144 votes behind former State Sen. Jamilah Nasheed and 1,548 votes behind Lewis Reed in a close three-way race. Green also finished runner-up in a 2020 race against Steve Roberts for a seat in the Missouri State Senate.

St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones, labor unions and progressive activism groups backed Green’s bid.

On Tuesday night, Jones issued the following statement on Green's victory:

Today, St. Louis chose collaboration over confrontation. St. Louis chose progress over the status quo. I’ve worked alongside Megan Green for many years and appreciate her dedication to addressing the root causes of the problems facing our city, not just the symptoms. Together, we can work to reimagine public safety, invest our federal resources to make change St. Louisans can feel, and reform the development incentive process her predecessor exploited for personal gain.

Congratulations to Megan on becoming the first woman elected President of the Board of Aldermen. The city’s top three decision makers, for the first time in St. Louis history, will be women. That’s something we should celebrate, and I look forward to collaborating with President-elect Green and Comptroller Green to make St. Louis a place that works for everyone - no matter your background or the color of your skin.

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