Pa. state Rep. Ed Gainey announces run for Pittsburgh mayor | News | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Pa. state Rep. Ed Gainey announces run for Pittsburgh mayor

click to enlarge Pa. state Rep. Ed Gainey announces run for Pittsburgh mayor
CP photo: Jared Wickerham
State Rep. Ed Gainey
Last week, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto officially announced his re-election efforts with a virtual event, and on Tue., Jan. 19 Peduto has received his most formidable challenger in the form of state Rep. Ed Gainey (D-Lincoln-Lemington).

Gainey has served as state representative for the 24th Pennsylvania House District since 2013 and has become a well-known progressive ally on issues like criminal justice reform, marijuana policy, labor, public transit, and the Black Lives Matter movement. If Gainey were to win, he would become the first Black mayor in Pittsburgh history. 

“I'm running for Mayor because I know that the working people of Pittsburgh need opportunities for good union jobs with a living wage and benefits, affordable housing, genuine public safety, and a city where we can all belong and contribute," says Gainey in a press release. "We can uplift the City of Pittsburgh for everyone if we start with those who have been left behind."

Gainey is known for giving fiery and inspiring public speeches and is often seen at community events and rallies for causes like racial justice. Throughout 2020 and continuing this year, his “CommUnity” good news social media posts have also been a constant source of positivity throughout the pandemic.

While Peduto garnered a wide array of support during his first official event and has a fairly large campaign war chest, Gainey also appears to have some powerful allies. SEIU Healthcare PA labor union vice president Silas Russell announced his support for Gainey shortly after his campaign announcement.

He grew up in East Liberty and graudated from Peabody High School, which is now called Obama Academy. Gainy holds a bachelor's degree in business management from Morgan State University, a historical Black university located in Baltimore. He and his wife Michelle (Coburn) Gainey live in Lincoln Lemington and have three children.

In a press release, Gainey acknowledged the division that exists in Pittsburgh. The city has glaring disparities in economic opportunity and health outcomes between white and Black Pittsburghers. Gainey says he is running to show that city government can make people's live better.

“I understand that city government has the power to change lives, uplift communities, and fix what’s broken in our city. Our city is divided, but when we all lay our heads down at night, I believe we all share the same vision for our families, our children, and our neighborhoods," says Gainey. "To fulfill our vision for a better tomorrow, Pittsburgh deserves a mayor who will fight with all they’ve got to see the vision through. I’m ready for that fight, and as the next Mayor of the city of Pittsburgh, I’ll be a Mayor for all of us."

The Gainey campaign will formerly launch with a virtual event on Sat., Jan. 23 at 2 p.m. More information about the event will be available at

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