Donald Bowens Jr. scores new set of local endorsements in St. Pete City Council bid
Image via Donald Bowens

Donald Bowens
'Donald strikes the balance between youthful vision and deep community roots.'

Donald Bowens Jr. has snagged a new batch of endorsements as the former North Carolina State University (N.C. State) wide receiver runs for the District 7 seat on the St. Petersburg City Council.

St. Petersburg City Council member Gina Driscoll is endorsing Bowens’ bid to join her on the Council.

“Donald brings a clear-eyed view of the issues we face, drawing from his own life experience. He has a compelling personal story, growing up in James Park, finding athletic success on the field in Campbell Park and then on the college level, eventually returning to St. Petersburg to make a difference in his hometown,” Driscoll said in a prepared statement announcing her endorsement.

“Donald’s experience gives him a unique understanding of some of our community’s most urgent needs, and he offers practical and innovative ideas to improve the quality of life for all residents. This is the person St. Petersburg needs, and this is the person I want to work alongside as we make St. Petersburg a better city for all.”

Two local leaders — Pastor Louis Murphy Sr. of Mt. Zion Progressive Baptist Church and Jean-Marie Leon, Chair of the Pinellas County Democratic Haitian Caucus — are joining Driscoll in backing Bowens.

“Donald strikes the balance between youthful vision and deep community roots, while embodying both forward-thinking and a genuine connection to the people he serves,” Leon said.

Murphy’s son, former NFL player Louis Murphy Jr., has also already endorsed Bowens as part of a slate of endorsements earlier this year.

Alabama state Rep. Jeremy Gray, one of Bowens’ former college teammates, is also putting his support behind Bowens, per this week’s announcement.

“Donald was not just a shining star on the field, but also a true exemplar of dedication and resilience. His ability to overcome adversity and consistently put forth hard work set a standard for his teammates and everyone around him. Donald’s commitment to excellence, paired with his leadership skills and determination, are exactly what St. Pete needs,” Gray said.

“I am confident that Donald will bring the same level of commitment and integrity to the City Council that he showed on the football field and in his everyday life. Donald Bowens Jr. has my full support, and I urge the residents of District 7 to cast their vote for a leader who truly cares about their community and its future.”

Bowens is looking to succeed John Muhammad, who was appointed to the seat in late 2022 to replace Lisa Wheeler-Bowman. Muhammad is not seeking election this year.

Bowens graduated from St. Pete High School and starred for the football team before playing N.C. State on an athletic scholarship. He has since returned to St. Pete, working in health care management, including previous work as director of operations at HCA Florida Brandon Hospital, HCA Florida Northside Hospital and HCA Florida Pasadena Hospital.

Ryan Nicol

Ryan Nicol covers news out of South Florida for Florida Politics. Ryan is a native Floridian who attended undergrad at Nova Southeastern University before moving on to law school at Florida State. After graduating with a law degree he moved into the news industry, working in TV News as a writer and producer, along with some freelance writing work. If you'd like to contact him, send an email to [email protected].


  • Starryeyed

    May 30, 2024 at 2:15 pm

    When did downtown Pete become one big 🏙️ City of concrete and block in one big heat wave…. no trees. To cool ya. by 20 degrees.

  • Starryeyed

    May 30, 2024 at 2:21 pm

    I smell injury’s and lawsuits. Scince economy and bulldozer came first before people and life and heatstroke and tar. Streets

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