Voter Guide: Ward 6

Updated: November 2, 2017 - 4:22 pm

DFLer Abdi Warsame became the first Somali-American city council member in the U.S. when he was elected in 2013. This year, he faces a serious challenge from another Somali-American, Mohamud Noor.

Noor is a former Minneapolis School Board member and candidate for the Minnesota House of Representatives. He criticized Warsame for not representing all Ward 6 residents during his tern and for not pushing hard enough on issues such as the minimum wage.

Warsame, former executive director of the Riverside Plaza Tenants Association, said he’s found success over the last four years standing up for some of Minneapolis “toughest” issues. His top priorities include public safety, affordable housing, creating a cooperative mall and strengthening environmental regulations.

The two went through a contentious process this past spring for the DFL endorsement. After a chaotic caucus night in April, Noor decided to skip the DFL endorsement convention in May. Warsame earned the party’s endorsement.

In 2014, Warsame endorsed Noor’s opponent for the Minnesota House, Rep. Phyllis Kahn, in a primary race Noor eventually lost. Two years later, Warsame backed Noor in a three-way race between Kahn, Noor and Ilhan Omar for the seat. Omar won the primary and the seat.

Tiffini Flynn Forslund is also running for the seat. She said her top priorities include finding creative ways to grow the economy, policy that unites privilege and the impoverished and family-safe infrastructure environmentally, physically and visually.

Republican Fadumo Yusuf is also in the Ward 6 race.


Tiffini Flynn ForslundTiffini Flynn Forslund

Current job: Unemployed teacher

Neighborhood: Seward

Endorsements: Womenwinning

Experience: Alternate Dispute Resolution and Restorative Justice service, Social Justice and racial equity, education reform, Roy Wilkins Public Policy Fellow, Being a Guardian ad Litem and child protection reform around out of home placement. Family court reform and Department of Corrections reform. ACES and being trauma informed. In addition to all those teaching and urban education and creating paths of success for all students.

Fundraising total: $1,627 (Jan. 1, 2017—July 25, 2017)



Top priorities: Finding creative ways to grow the economy, policy that unites privilege and the impoverished and a family safe infrastructure environmentally, physically and visually. My goal is to accomplish these through an intersectional action plan so that all the populations within Ward 6 feel validated and valued.

Why she is best for the job:  I am dedicated and driven for better results for Ward 6 and Minneapolis. As a women of color who encounters roadblocks often, I am resilient and refuse to compromise on the integrity of the people and humanity.


Mohamud NoorMohamudNoor

Neighborhood: Cedar-Riverside

Current job: Executive director of Confederation of Somali Communities

Endorsements: Our Revolution Twin Cities, Outfront MN, Take Action MN, state representatives Ilhan Omar, Karen Clark and Susan Allen, Mayor Betsy Hodges

Experience: System administrator for Hennepin County and Minnesota Department of Human Services; appointee to the governor’s Council of Black Minnesotans; longtime union activist for the Minnesota Association of Professional Employees; former Minneapolis Board of Education director

Fundraising total: $19,300 (Jan. 1, 2017—July 25, 2017)

Pitch: I’m running to bring progressive and unifying leadership to Ward 6.


Facebook: /VoteNoorWard6

Twitter: @mohamudnoor

Top priorities: $15 living wage, bringing small businesses and jobs to the ward, affordable housing, restoring voting rights for felons, improving re-entry for inmates, renovation of Ward 6 parks, transit solutions, alternative financing sources, bias and de-escalation training for cops, restorative justice for youth, ending the U.S. Department of Justice’s Countering Violent Extremism program

Why he is best for the job: As the Director of the Confederation of Somali Communities I understand the importance of listening to everyone. I have worked in the community to get access to existing benefits for over 4,000 families by listening to family’s needs and problem solving. I believe that inclusive governing can only happen with responsive and engaged representatives. I pledge to put residents first and to be open to all perspectives.

Council Member Warsame has failed to represent all residents of Ward 6 during the last three and a half years. He has failed to hold any listening sessions during his time in office and has failed to adequately push for progressive policies. Warsame hasn’t pushed hard enough of issues like raising the minimum wage, police reform, LGBT rights and climate change. Ward 6 needs a change.

I will focus on being a progressive leader that Ward 6 has lacked over the last three and a half years. As your Council Member, I will focus on inclusive governing, racial equity, a fair wage, affordable housing and sanctuary for immigrants and refugees. I am ready to take on the challenge of resisting the bully in the White House and ensuring that Minneapolis is the first and strongest line of defense.


Abdi WarsameAbdi Warsame

Neighborhood: Cedar-Riverside

Current job: Ward 6 City Council member

Endorsements: DFL, Minnesota Nurses Association, SEIU, Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation, AFSCME, and the Minnesota Fire Fighters Local 82

Experience: One term as Ward 6 Council Member; former executive director of the Riverside Plaza Tenants Association; former board chair of the Cedar-Riverside Neighborhood Revitalization Program; Operations Officer: Institutional Retirement and Trust – Wells Fargo

Fundraising total: $142,052.23 (Jan. 1, 2014—July 25, 2017)

Pitch: Building a better future for our community


Facebook: /Abdiwarsame6

Twitter: @AbdiYWarsame

Top priorities: Public safety; standing up for historically marginalized communities; creating vibrant, healthy neighborhoods through public, affordable and market-rate housing options; building on progress toward developing better community policing standards; creating a cooperative mall; strengthening environmental regulations such as the zero waste policy; skills and educational development/training for Minneapolis workers; building a racially and economically just city.

Why he is best for the job: I believe that being a Somali child refugee, growing up in London prepared me for this office. I take great pride in my Somali heritage and upbringing, but I was also raised in Western culture and education programs. Due to having an intimate relationship with both cultures, I believe I’m equipped to bridge the gap between the traditional community and the East African community in Ward 6. Also, I believe that my experience in both the private and public sector is a huge asset in understanding the viewpoints and needs of stakeholders from each group. I know the challenges our city faces. The municipal-government experience I’ve gained over the last four years and the pathways I’ve found to success on addressing some of the city’s toughest issues will allow me to immediately start work on finding solutions to more of them.


Fadumo Yusuf