The candidate’s photo and biography were submitted by each campaign.
DEAN KUMPURIS (INCUMBENT)
Dr. Dean Kumpuris has served as Position 8 At-Large City Director for years. He was appointed to fill a vacancy on the City Board in January 1995. He has been elected to terms in 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016. From January 2011 until December 2012, Dr. Kumpuris served as Vice Mayor of the City of Little Rock.
Director Kumpuris is a graduate of Little Rock Hall High, Washington & Lee University, and Emory University Medical School. He is a gastroenterologist in practice in Little Rock.
Revitalization of downtown Little Rock has been a major focus of Director Kumpuris. He has been involved in the department of the River Market and the expansion of Riverfront Park. He worked with children and parks staff to design the new Peabody Park play area in Riverfront Park. Director Kumpuris also championed the La Petite Roche Plaza in the park, which pays tribute to the City’s namesake.
Dr. Kumpuris was the City’s liaison to the site selection and planning for the Clinton Presidential Center and Park. In addition, he worked to establish the Bill Clark Wetlands Park along the bank of the Arkansas River.
Director Kumpuris has also been instrumental in the encouragement of public art. In less than 10 years, his efforts have led to over 90 sculptures in those two parks and additional sculptures placed throughout Little Rock. The Sculpture at the River Market show attracts thousands of visitors each year.
A member of St. Mark Episcopal Church, he and his wife Mary have two children. He has also been a longtime supporter of the Boys and Girls Club. In addition to being a vocal supporter of the City’s Prevention, Intervention and Treatment programs, he is the founder of Arkansas Commitment. Director Kumpuris is a member and chairman of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Board of Visitors.
Russ Racop is an activist and journalist who publishes several blogs that expose and document misdeeds and misadventures of local, county, state and federal agencies and their employees in Arkansas.
Family: Four children
Education: Degrees in Psychology and Philosophy from the University of Arkansas – Little Rock
Occupation: Activist and Blogger
Experience: Social Worker and administrator for the Arkansas Department of Human Services, Division of Children & Family Services; Investigator for the Arkansas Department of Human Services, Office of Chief Counsel. Vice President, Corporate Security – Regions Financial Corp and Iberiabank Corp.
Editorial note: This candidate did not respond to our request for an interview or provide written responses to the 10 questions.