The race to represent much of central Oakland on the City Council, including Chinatown and the Grand Lake district, now has a second major candidate.

Abel Guillen, who narrowly lost a bid for State Assembly two years ago, announced Wednesday that he will seek the District 2 seat that is being vacated by incumbent Pat Kernighan.

"I simply love this city," Guillen said in a prepared statement. "Oakland has played (a) big role in my life, shaping my character and instilling my dedication to community service."

Guillen, who is expected to receive strong union support, will be running against former KPIX news anchor Dana King, who already has had a fundraiser sponsored by developer Phil Tagami. Also in the race are Andrew Park, Kevin Blackburn and Sokham Mao, who serves on Oakland's Citizens Police Review Board.

Guillen, who works for a firm that specializes in school bond measures, currently represents much of the council district on the Peralta Community College Board of Trustees. His early endorsers include Chinatown business leader Carl Chan, Deputy Mayor Sandré Swanson and Assemblymember Rob Bonta, who defeated Guillen for the seat in 2012.



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