HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — The race to become the next mayor of Hartford is on. Democratic candidates introduced themselves to voters on Thursday night.

The Hartford mayoral candidates are:

  • Arunan Arulampalam, CEO of Hartford Land Bank and former deputy commissioner for consumer protection
  • Eric Coleman, retired superior court judge
  • State Sen John Fonfara (Hartford- Wethersfield)
  • Hartford City Councilman Nick Lebron.
  • Community activist and veteran Giselle G. Jacobs
  • J. Stan McCauley, cable access broadcaster
  • Renardo M.D. Dunn, Jr., Hartford pastor
  • Tracy Funnye, Hartford resident, community activist

The candidates touched upon many issues including economic development, affordable housing, gun violence, crime and flooding in the North End of Hartford.

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“I am looking for a candidate of change someone who can create opportunities who will integrate with the community someone who can speak for the community and who can see hartford in a different light,” said Lebert Thomas, Hartford resident.

The forum was an intimate setting where residents got to know the candidates, as well as their beliefs and personalities.

“I look for knowledge and skills and ability, and I look absolutely at their past history what they have done in the past for the city not just when they started running,” said Cynthia Jennings, an environmental attorney.

“Who to elect? That’s the problem. But that is a good problem to have, you have so many good candidates that you have to figure out which candidate is the best of the best,” said RJO Winch of Hartford.