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Local Government 101: Meet the City Council

Get familiar with how Lexington, KY’s local government works and explore your role as an engaged citizen.

A black and white photo of Vine Street in Lexington, KY

Downtown Lexington, E. Vine Street. | Photo by @madeyalookphotography

Table of Contents

To be an effective citizen, you have to be a knowledgeable one.

How does our local government work? Where can I have a say? Who can I go to if I have a problem? What resources are available to me?

Class is in session, Lexingtonians. We’re teaching LEX GOV 101, where we break down different aspects of our local government to become engaged citizens that create healthier (and more effective) communities.

How does it work?
In short, the Mayor and City Council members develop policies and enact laws.

Who’s who? Let’s start at the top. We’ll give you a peek into our City Council members, but strongly encourage you to get to know them by clicking on their names and exploring each member’s bio page on the City of Lexington’s website.

  • The Mayor
  • The Vice Mayor
  • Council District members (12)
  • At-Large Council members (3)
Members of Lexington's City council with the Mayor and Vice Mayor

Mayor Linda Gorton, Vice Mayor Dan Wu, and members of the Urban County Council at their inauguration on Dec. 30, 2022.

Amy Wallot/LFUCG

Mayor

Linda Gorton | Mayor Gorton is serving her second term. Read the highlights from her State of the City address.

Vice Mayor

Dan Wu | Vice Mayor Wu is also considered an at-large council member and was elected to the city government for the first time in November 2022. He is also a former board member of LexArts and The Human Rights Commission, among others.

At-Large Council members

James Brown | Councilmember Brown is a Lexington native and has been a member of the city government since 2015. His bio states that he is passionate about the school system and service to neighborhoods.

Chuck Ellinger II | Councilmember Ellinger is also a Lexington native and was re-elected as an at-large council member in November 2022.

Council District

Tayna Fogle, District 1 | Councilmember Fogle was born and raised in the district she represents, which covers parts of downtown, the East End, and corridors like North Broadway and North Limestone. In 2020, she was appointed to Law Enforcement, Justice, and Accountability Subcommittee of the Commission for Racial Justice and Equality.

Shayla Lynch, District 2 | Councilmember Lynch has worked with various nonprofits, and is currently the Executive Director of the Carnegie Center for Literacy & Learning and an active group fitness instructor. Included in this district are Citation Boulevard and Masterson Station areas.

Hannah LeGris, District 3 | Councilmember LeGris has represented the third district — which includes downtown and UK’s campus — since 2020. She serves on the Sister Cities Commission and the Tree Board, among others.

Brenda Monarrez, District 4 | Councilmember Monarrez has called Lexington home for 30+ years and is the first person of Latin-American descent to serve on city council. She worked abroad in 12 countries during her time at Lexmark International and is a housing advocate. district extends along Nicholasville Road from New Circle to the Jessamine County border.

    Liz Sheehan, District 5 | Councilmember Sheehan has been representing the historic neighborhoods of the 40502, 40505, and 40517 zip codes since 2020. She is also a faculty member in UK’s Department of Psychology and an active member of numerous boards.

    Denise Gray, District 6 | Councilmember Gray was elected in November 2022 and is an active member of the Fayette County Public Schools system. She’s been active on numerous boards, including the Autism Society Bluegrass. The major corridors include Paris Pike, Winchester Road, and schools like Bryan Station and Frederick Douglass High Schools.

    Preston Worley, District 7 | Councilmember Worley has served the seventh district since 2017. He’s also a lawyer with McBrayer Law Firm with a practice including affordable housing. Neighborhoods like Andover Hills and Woodhill along with EJ Hayes Elementary are represented here.

    Fred Brown, District 8 | Councilmember Brown is currently in his fifth term. His focus is on what he calls the “3Ps” — Public Safety, Parks, and Paving Infrastructure.

    Whitney Baxter, District 9 | Councilmember Baxter’s district covers the many residents and businesses from New Circle Road — between Harrodsburg and Nicholasville Roads — right on the border of Jessamine County. She also serves on the board of the Explorium of Lexington, the City Employees’ Pension Fund, and the Internal Audit.

    Dave Sevigny, District 10 | Councilmember Sevigny’s bio states that he has a passion for community and small business stewardship. He’s served on the board of Commerce Lexington, CASA, and other nonprofits.

    Jennifer Reynolds, District 11 | Councilmember Reynolds has served city council since 2018. She is fluent in Spanish, is a certified medical interpreter, and says that she takes pride in community outreach and service.

    Kathy Plomin, District 12 | Councilmember Plomin is currently serving her fourth term in the district that makes up 70% of Fayette County’s landmass and includes Keeneland, The Kentucky Horse Park, and Raven Run Nature Sanctuary.