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Dooley Hires Former Clayton Mayor To Aid Re-election Campaign

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Former Clayton Mayor Linda Goldstein has signed on to be St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley’s director of campaign communications.

Goldstein said in an interview that she was joining Dooley, who is seeking re-election this fall, because she had been impressed by his decade-long tenure as the county’s top official.

“I hope to spread the message about the wonderful things he has done,’’ Goldstein said. “Working with Charlie Dooley during my years as mayor and while on the St. Louis County Municipal League Board, I’ve been impressed by the number of jobs he has brought to the region, the dramatic decrease in the county’s crime rate and the expanded access to health care in our community.”

Goldstein’s hiring also signals that Dooley is ramping up his re-election campaign. He is expected to face County Councilman Steve Stenger of Affton in August's Democratic primary.  Candidate filing begins Feb. 25, and both are expected to file on the first day.

Stenger and Dooley have been sparring over several issues. Most recently, Stenger called for the departure of county chief operating officer Garry Earls, who works for Dooley, because of several controversies swirling around the Dooley administration.

The latest campaign reports showed Stenger with a financial edge, although Dooley disputes the figures because Stenger has lent some of his own money to his campaign.

Said Stenger spokesman Ed Rhode: “At this point in the campaign we continue to focus on fundraising, which is evident by Councilman Stenger outraising Mr. Dooley by a 2 to 1 margin last quarter.”

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St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley

St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch has endorsed Stenger. In an interview this week, McCulloch said he remained committed to helping Stenger.

Dooley said of Stenger, "He's not going to outwork me."

Dooley said he hired Goldstein because he’s known her for a long time and values her ability. “She’s a former mayor of Clayton,” he said. “She can speak from that experience” and talk about how county government deals with the municipalities. “Do we listen to what they have to say?”

Goldstein’s role, he said, will be to help “get into campaign mode. We’ve got a great story to tell and we need people in place to tell that story.”

Jo Mannies has been covering Missouri politics and government for almost four decades, much of that time as a reporter and columnist at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She was the first woman to cover St. Louis City Hall, was the newspaper’s second woman sportswriter in its history, and spent four years in the Post-Dispatch Washington Bureau. She joined the St. Louis Beacon in 2009. She has won several local, regional and national awards, and has covered every president since Jimmy Carter. She scared fellow first-graders in the late 1950s when she showed them how close Alaska was to Russia and met Richard M. Nixon when she was in high school. She graduated from Valparaiso University in northwest Indiana, and was the daughter of a high school basketball coach. She is married and has two grown children, both lawyers. She’s a history and movie buff, cultivates a massive flower garden, and bakes banana bread regularly for her colleagues.

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