Ray O'Connell was elected mayor of the city by a vote of City Council on March 29, 2018.
Council was tasked with selecting a replacement for Mayor Ed Pawlowski who resigned on March 9. The city's Home Rule Charter required that Pawlowski's replacement be a city resident and of the same political party. Pawlowski is a Democrat.
O'Connell is a former two-term councilperson and three year president of council.
Ray has resided in the City of Allentown for over 33 years with his wife, Mary Beth, and their two children, Brendan and Kaitlin (both graduates of the Allentown School District).
The 68-year-old O'Connell is a retired Allentown School District teacher and administrator.
From 1972- 1978, he was an Elementary Teacher at Mosser Elementary School. Ray has been a Member of the Allentown Recreation Commission for 20 years; a Member of the Allentown Human Relations Commission for two years; and has served on the Big Brothers/Big Sisters Board of Directors for several years.
From 1978 - 1982, he was the Assistant Principal at Raub Middle School.
From 1982 - 2001, he was the Principal at Trexler Middle School.
And from 2001 - 2007, he was the Executive Director of Secondary Education for the Allentown School District, where he supervised the 4 middle schools and 2 high schools in the District.
O'Connell will serve until January 2020.