Kevin Johnson, a West End business owner and aide to former council member Laketa Cole, didn't get the nominating committee's recommendation for a Democratic party endorsement, but he is running for Cincinnati City Council anyway.
Johnson will kick off his campaign at 6 p.m. Thursday at Sonny's All Blues Cafe, 4040 Reading Rd., North Avondale.
Johnson said, years ago, that is where he had a conversation with former Cincinnati mayor Dwight Tillery that "set my life on a different path. I trace my passion for public service back to that day."
The Democratic Party's nominating committee has recommended a slate of nine Cincinnati City Council candidates that does not include a former mayor and councilman - David Mann - who is running again 21 years after leaving council.