On October 10, El Paso News asked all city council candidates running for city council in the November 8, 2022 ballot to answer our questionnaire for our Voters’ Guide 2022. Out of 17 candidates, two did not respond to our request. One candidate for District 1, Freddy Klayel Avalos announced on October 12 that he was suspending his campaign. Although Avalos is no longer running for office, his name remains on the ballot. As such, we have listed him on our Voters’ Guide as having withdrawn.

Four city council seats are open in this election cycle. They are Districts 1, 5, 6 and 8. Two incumbents, Isabel Salcido (5) and Claudia Lizzette Rodriguez (6) are facing challengers.

El Paso News is profiling each candidate by district. Their profiles are the answers they provided us. We are publishing their answers, in full, without any editing.

We are only publishing the profiles for the candidates that answered our questionnaire. Download our Voters’ Guide for a complete list of candidates running for office.

Our printable and downloadable one-page Voters’ Guide is available for download at the bottom of this article. We have also created one-page profiles for each of the candidates. They are available for download as well after each of the candidates’ profiles.

Today we are publishing the profiles for the District 6 candidates.

Councilwoman Claudia Lizette Rodriguez

Claudia Lizzette Rodriguez

Age: 37

Telephone Number: (915) 667-4525

Email Address: claudia@claudiaforelpaso.com

Campaign Website: claudiaforelpaso.com

Education: BA in Architecture

Current Occupation: City Council District 6

Arrest Record: Case was dismissed and expunged

Previous Political Office: Yes currently District 6 city council

Current on city taxes: Yes

One sentence message to the voters:

I am the only candidate that is a first generation latina born and raised in El Paso TX and has lived her entire life in District 6, therefor no other candidate knows District 6 the way I know and have served district 6!

Top Three Issues:

  1. Taxes, keep demanding that we reduce them as well to keep voting NO on certificates of obligation!
  2. Streets, I will continue to fix streets at historic new records!
  3. Economy, continue to bring new businesses to El Paso to offset property tax burden!

What motivates you to run for office: My constituents! Serving them is a privilege and a blessing!

How will the candidate vote, as a trustee or as a delegate:

I believe in a hybrid model. Because we are a non-partisan governing entity people elect us based on our platform and because of that they trust our judgment. However there are many instances where we also spend a lot of time with our constituency, and they are actively asking for us to vote in a specific way, it is in those instances when the people get very loud about something, we need to take a better reading of their temperature and support what they are demanding.

The 2012 Sports Arena:

El Paso needs to find Pareto optimum, a common ground when it comes to the Multi-
Purpose Performing Arts and Entertainment Center (MPC). We need a solution that at
the end of the day will result in what is best for El Paso.

The MPC project was approved by voters 10 years ago and has been in limbo due to
litigation because of the location selected for the project. We cannot let this suit drag on forever because one person wants to beat the City instead of focusing on what is right, which is preserving our community’s history and protecting El Paso against wasteful spending.

When I was sworn into City Council in 2020, one of my campaign promises was historic preservation. My goal was and still is to save the historic buildings that are part of the MPC in the downtown district that is known as Duranguito or the Union Plaza area. I have a degree in architecture and historic preservation. I am a native El Pasoan who loves her community. I love our culture and our history because it is MY culture and MY history. It is because of my affection for historic buildings that I was approached by Max Grossman and was allied with him for the last couple of years.

The buildings within the MPC footprint are why I advocated for the City to develop a
work plan to address safety concerns for two structures. I also pressed for a feasibility
study that will preserve the neighborhoods historic buildings and historic character.
It is unfortunate that Max, whom I believed was also focused on preserving the
buildings, is now on a rampage to misinform and divide the community about the MPC feasibility study. Max is lying about the feasibility study claiming that the City has no intention to preserve our history, but the historic buildings are exactly what I’m fighting for.

The feasibility study can bring about the preservation of historic buildings within the
MPC footprint. Beyond just preserving the buildings, we can do something even more
amazing by reactivating the blighted structures. We can give them a new life and
purpose and bring about something very exciting for our community.

I once believed Max Grossman. Until recently, he was an ally and a friend. I defended
him when people attacked him, even against people he once called friends. It is
shameful that I am being attacked by this same person who I now know to be an
arrogant, manipulative bully, and a liar. And while he may claim seats in historical
boards and commissions, he, a transplant to El Paso, has no affection for our
community, our culture, or our people.

Max will claim that he knows exactly what our community needs but he never takes a
moment to listen—truly listen—and to understand or talk with people beyond his email lists. He is so closed-minded and never speaks to others in the community; particularly with the residents who did in fact vote FOR the MPC project about how we can, not only, keep our history but also improve our community’s economy.

Instead, we receive toxic and divisive emails laced with half-truths and what some might perceive as misogynist and bombastic comments. I’m sure after he reads this column, he will hit send on another vitriolic email attacking me, attacking the City, and attacking anyone he perceives is in his way.

But petty emails won’t help us move forward.

As I stated at the beginning, we need to find a common ground—a Pareto optimum. I
sincerely believe we can creatively find a way to preserve our history while keeping our promise to the voters if we work on a compromise that all of us can be proud of and end a decade-long saga. I invite the community to help me preserve our history by filling out the MPC survey at

How do you plan to stay in touch with your constituents: My constituents can always call me personally, where we can establish the best form of contact.  This is how I have built personal relationships with my constituency and I find it the most effective way to stay in contact with them personally. 

Cristian Botello

Cristian Botello

Age: 25

Telephone Number: Not provided

Email Address: botellofordistrict6@gmail.com

Campaign Website: http://www.botellofordistrict6.com

Education: Bachelor’s in sociology and master’s in public administration, concentration in public policy & management.

Current Occupation: Co-owner of El Paso Balloons.

Arrest Record: I am someone who values honesty and being open about my past. In 2018, I was charged with a DWI. Thankfully, no one was hurt in this incident. However, my actions were shameful, and I will regret it for the rest of my life.

Previous Political Office: None

Current on city taxes: Yes

One sentence message to the voters:

I am passionate about public service and believe I can bring new energy and ideas to the city council.

Top Three Issues:

  1. Better and safer streets: We need to repair and maintain our streets. This includes our main streets like Saul Kleinfeld and Pebble Hills but also residential streets that have not been repaved. Furthermore, we need to make our streets safer by reducing speeding and appropriating city funds for traffic-calming devices.
  2. Property tax relief: This is also on everyone’s minds, and we must do more than just lower the tax rate. We need to focus on a long-term solution by attracting companies that can share the tax burden. This will lessen the tax burden on residents and bring high-paying jobs. In addition, the city should seek opportunities to leverage federal and state grants.
  3. Improve public safety: We need to increase the number of police and firefighters. We have had roughly the same number of police officers as 20 years ago and a large number of them are retiring soon. This will help improve the response time and be more proactive in keeping our neighborhood safe.

What motivates you to run for office: I am passionate about El Paso and want to devote my life to improving this city. I realized this passion when I ran for President of the UTEP Student Government Association and was inspired to pursue a career in public service. To make a small impact I joined my neighborhood association and assisted in expanding a walking trail at my park. I am now ready to make a larger impact in my community and bring new ideas and energy to the city council.

How will the candidate vote, as a trustee or as a delegate:

I will make decisions based on what my constituents support. However, there will be moments I will make decisions that are best for my constituents based on the information I am presented with.

The 2012 Sports Arena:

If the city has a strong financial plan and the city can afford it, I will support continuing the Multipurpose Performing Arts and Entertainment Center. The final results of the feasibility will give city council guidance of potential financial models that will include estimated costs and opportunities to preserve historical buildings.

How do you plan to stay in touch with your constituents: I will host monthly community meetings to give updates about our city and invite local officials to speak on various topics. In addition, I will have regular newsletters, mailers, and social media posts with updates about the city and district 6. For upcoming projects in the community, I will engage with residents who will be potentially impacted and ensure they are aware of the project and gather feedback. I am committed to responding quickly to any request or questions from residents.

Open narrative to the voters:

I am new to government and can bring a new perspective and ideas to the city council. I am someone who would work with the rest of the city council not only for my district but for all El Paso. There are many opportunities I’ve learned from residents, and I want to work on those projects. After getting my master’s in public administration and getting to work on projects in my neighborhood, I am ready to apply my experience and advocate for change. I humbly ask for your vote. Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions or concerns.

Art Fierro

Art Fierro

Age: 60

Telephone Number: (915) 801-6090

Email Address: art4elpaso@icloud.com

Campaign Website: art4elpaso.com

Education: Attended EPCC and Attended UTEP.

Current Occupation: State Representative District 79.

Arrest Record: Yes – DWI Early 90’s.

Previous Political Office: EPCC Trustee District 6, State Representative District 79.

Current on city taxes: Yes

One sentence message to the voters:

I am transparent, accountable, and have a proven record on holding the line on taxes.

Top Three Issues:

  1. Tax Freeze for seniors and for individuals with disabilities.
  2. Hold the City Manager Accountable and demand transparency for all citizens.
  3. Zero based budget. Make department heads justify their budget.

What motivates you to run for office: At the beginning as a trustee was to curb the skyrocketing tuition at EPCC. Now, it’s to lower our ever-increasing taxes and to stop spending certificates of obligation without voter approval.

How will the candidate vote, as a trustee or as a delegate:

I will make policy decisions as a “Representative” not “Trustee” a trustee makes decisions on the philosophy the one knows best. A Representative makes decisions on representing the wishes of the constituency. I will govern as a Representative, which is what’s missing on Council.

The 2012 Sports Arena:

I would never vote or support an arena on the backs of taxpayers.

How do you plan to stay in touch with your constituents: Opening a satellite office on the eastside, return calls, monthly newsletter, emails and have monthly community meetings. Everything that District 6 deserves and has not received in years.

Martin Paredes

Martín Paredes is a Mexican immigrant who built his business on the U.S.-Mexican border. As an immigrant, Martín brings the perspective of someone who sees México as a native through the experience...