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Wooden Leads Segarra, McCauley In Fundraising

Has Taken In $52,000 Since He Announced Run For Hartford Mayor 2 Months Ago

Jenna Carlesso

January 17, 2011

City lawyer Shawn Wooden has emerged as the fundraising leader in the campaign for mayor, taking in $52,000 since he announced his intention to run two months ago.

The incumbent, Mayor Pedro Segarra, raised $15,200 during the same period, and J. Stan McCauley, the founder of an online television network, raised $900.

"I didn't know what to expect starting the campaign over the holidays, so in that sense it exceeded my expectations," said Wooden, 41, a Democrat and lawyer for Day Pitney LLP in Hartford. "I feel very good about this first filing. I'm confident about my ability to raise a good amount of money for this campaign."

Wooden's donations came from 90 people, many of whom are lawyers for Day Pitney. He said most of his fundraising has been done through phone solicitations.

Wooden said he plans to host several fundraisers, but pointed out that raising money for a campaign is only half the battle.

"A lot of time we get focused on money, but I believe deeply that this campaign is going to be about the people," he said. "Money is important in terms of resources, but ultimately, the people of this city connecting with them that will dictate who the next mayor will be."

Both Segarra and McCauley, who are also Democrats, said they have yet to start seriously fundraising.

The mayor said he hasn't hired a campaign manager, but is interviewing applicants.

"I'm not concerned about it," he said. "My focus has been on running city business, not running a campaign. Money doesn't necessarily buy you the office."

Segarra's contributions came from a variety of individual donations.

"I've put a lot of work into running this city and trying to lift us out of the cloud we were in, and I don't want to neglect that," he said, referring to his taking over the office after former Mayor Eddie Perez was convicted on bribery and extortion charges. "The political stuff is secondary."

McCauley said his efforts will begin on Saturday, when he will host a combination birthday party-fundraiser downtown.

"Most of my fundraising will be done with local house parties," said McCauley, 50, who founded accesstv.org. "I want and need to have local people contributing, even if it's only $5 here, $10 there."

McCauley, who ran unsuccessfully against Perez in 2007 as a Republican, said his name recognition among city residents gives him an edge. He said he is working with the same team that assisted Matthew Ritter in his successful campaign for state representative in the 1st House District.

"Hartford is lacking leadership," he said. "The corruption we have seen is absolutely out of control and no one seems to be concerned enough to step up to the plate."

Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant. To view other stories on this topic, search the Hartford Courant Archives at http://www.courant.com/archives.
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