Linda D. Thompson

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Linda D. Thompson
Mayor of the City of Harrisburg
In office
January 4, 2010 – January 6, 2014
Preceded by Stephen R. Reed
Succeeded by Eric R. Papenfuse
Personal details
Political party Democratic
Residence Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

Linda Deliah Thompson (born c. 1961) is an American politician and former mayor of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania serving from January 4, 2010, until January 6, 2014. Thompson was Harrisburg's first female and first black mayor.[1] On May 21, 2013 Thompson lost her bid for renomination, placing third in the Democratic Party primary behind Eric R. Papenfuse, who won the nomination, and City Controller Dan Miller, who placed second.[2]

Early life[edit]

Born and raised in Harrisburg, Thompson graduated from Harrisburg High School in 1979.[3] She went on to attend Howard University in Washington, DC where she received a B.S. in Communications. While in Washington, Thompson interned at the United States Department of Justice.

Political career[edit]

In 2001, Thompson was elected to serve on the Harrisburg City Council. She was re-elected and appointed President of City Council in 2005. While on council, Thompson introduced legislation to sell off city-owned Western artifacts in order to raise money to pay down debts. She also amended the 2009 budget to include $100,000 to pay for a city-wide bulk trash pickup.[4] Thompson decided not to run for re-election in 2009 and instead ran for the Democratic nomination for Mayor. In the May primary, Thompson beat former mayor Stephen R. Reed by nearly 1,000 votes to win the election.[5] Despite her upset win in the Democratic primary, Thompson went on to win the general election by only about 800 votes against Republican challenger Nevin Mindlin.[6] Failure to reach an agreement on how to assign the budget and what should or should not be included, as well as an Act 47 proposal by the state turned down by the City Council, led to a fiscal emergency she attempted to resolve.[7][8] On May 21, 2013, Thompson was defeated for re-nomination as mayor by Harrisburg businessman Eric Papenfuse, who won the primary, and City Controller Dan Miller, who placed second.[9]


In late March 2013 Mayor Thompson was discussing the privatization of city waste collection, she stated, "We're not opening up our flood gates for some scumbag that comes from Perry County who … comes here and wants to dump for free." The comment brought about a firestorm of backlash.[10]

See also[edit]