City Council District No. 9 Vacancy

Thank you for your interest in serving as a district council member for the City of Topeka.

The resignation of Councilmember Michael Lesser was effective November 1, 2022. The resignation creates a vacancy that will be filled by the governing body in accordance with Topeka Municipal Code Sections A2-29 and 2.15.080. The appointee will serve the remainder of a four-year term, ending December 2025.

Current Council District 9 Boundary Map

As of January 1, 2023, the boundaries will change according to redistricting Plan A.

District 9 Boundaries (Effective January 1, 2023):

  • West – Generally runs from SW 6th street to SW 17th street along SW Urish Road
  • South – Generally runs from SW Kingsrow Road to SW Gage Boulevard along SW 21st Street
  • East – Generally runs from SW 21st Street to Interstate I-70 along SW Gage Boulevard
  • North – Generally runs from Interstate I-70 to SW Urish Road along the Kansas River

Governing Body Meetings and Processes

The Notice of Vacancy was published in the Topeka Metro News on November 7, 2022.

  • Applicants must be at least 18 years of age
  • A citizen of the United States
  • A qualified elector of the City of Topeka and reside within the boundaries of Council District No. 9 at the time of applying and thereafter for the duration of the term
Interviews will be conducted in the following order. The same order received by the City Clerk.
  1. Michaela R. Saunders (November 18, 2022)
  2. Joe Cheray (November 18, 2022)
  3. Nicholas Trammell (November 18, 2022)
  4. Michelle Hoferer (November 21, 2022)
  5. Janel L. Johnson (November 21, 2022)
Unless an alternative date and/or time is established by the governing body, the members shall interview each applicant at the next governing body meeting (December 6, 2022) following the application deadline of November 21, 2022.
  • Applicants will receive interview questions on November 28, 2022
  • Interviews will be conducted at the December 6, 2022, Governing Body meeting.
  • Interviews will be conducted in the order applications are received by the City Clerk.
  • Interviews will consist of an opening statement by the applicant and the asking and answering of all interview questions.
At the conclusion of the interviews the governing body may conduct an election to fill the vacant position, subject to the following rules:
  1. The election shall be conducted only during a governing body meeting. The election may be deferred to a subsequent meeting. In no event shall an election be deferred later than the next governing body meeting.
  2. Each councilmember and the mayor shall vote for one person on each ballot by indicating in writing his or her choice and signing the ballot before submitting it to the city clerk.
  3. The city clerk shall read the result of each ballot.
  4. Balloting shall end any time one applicant receives a majority vote of the remaining members of the governing body.
  5. If no applicant receives a sufficient number of votes, five votes is required, additional ballots shall be cast until one of the applicants receives a sufficient number of votes or the matter is deferred until a date certain, which shall not be later than the next governing body meeting.
  6. The council and mayor may confer after any ballot in any manner consistent with the Kansas Open Meetings Act. (Ord. 20009 § 3, 6-21-16.)
If you have any questions, email the City Clerk’s Office at or call 785-368-3941 and we would be happy to help.