Outcome: The top three at-large vote-getters in the Democratic Party primary were Susan Sandberg with 2,993 votes (21.54 percent), Jim Sims with 2,728 votes (19.63 percent) and Matt Flaherty with 2,564 votes (18.45 percent). Jean Capler received 2,338 votes (16.82%). [Full results here]
Jean Capler is running for a four-year term on the Bloomington Common Council as an at-large councilmember. She is one of six candidates vying for three at-large seats in the May 7, 2019 Democratic Party primary. Other at-large candidates are Vauhxx Booker, Matt Flaherty, Andy Ruff, Susan Sandberg and Jim Sims.
No Republicans have filed for the at-large seats in the May primary.
On her campaign website, Capler provides action items under four general categories: 1) integrated approaches to complex issues; 2) affordable housing; 3) transportation; and 4) substance use disorders – treatment and harm reduction.
A licensed clinical social worker, Capler works for the Rehabilitation Hospital of Indiana (RHI) as a resource facilitator. She has served as board vice president for the Indiana chapter of the National Association of Social Workers.
Capler is a member of the city’s Utilities Service Board, appointed by mayor John Hamilton for a term ending Dec. 31, 2022.
Capler was named 2016 Bloomington Woman of the Year, an award given by the City of Bloomington Commission on the Status of Women. She was chosen for her LGBTQ+ advocacy work as well as for working on behalf of people who have experienced brain injuries. She is a co-founder of FairTalk, an advocacy group for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender equality.
Capler is treasurer for the Indiana 9th District Democratic Party. In 2017, she was one of six candidates seeking to fill a vacancy on the Bloomington council following the resignation of Tim Mayer. The Monroe County Democratic Party caucus chose Jim Sims for that spot.
Capler holds a master’s degree in social work from Indiana University. She is married to Jenny Austin, a vocational rehabilitation counselor for the state of Indiana.
Shannon McCann is Capler’s campaign treasurer. Her campaign chair is Ashley Pirani.
Links to Additional Information
Campaign finance reports (2019 election cycle):
- Statement of organization
- Declaration of candidacy
- Statement of economic interests
- Pre-Primary Report of Receipts and Expenditures
In the News: Jean Capler
Sandberg, Sims, Flaherty earn Democratic at-large city council nominations; Ruff out
– Bloomington Herald-Times, May 7, 2019
City Council Newcomers Prevail In Democratic Primary – Indiana Public Media, May 7, 2019
City council at-large candidates discuss affordable housing, parking – Bloomington Herald-Times, May 3, 2019
Council candidates discuss Fourth Street parking garage, housing development – Indiana Daily Student, April 2, 2019
Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce candidate forum (video) – Community Access Television Services (CATS), April 2, 2019
City council candidates discuss parking, the downtown and affordable housing – Bloomington Herald-Times, April 2, 2019
At-large city council candidates talk climate, development, equality at forum – Indiana Daily Student, March 26, 2019
Big Talk Interview with At-Large Candidate Jean Capler – WFHB, March 14, 2019
Newcomer city council candidates’ ages trend downward – Bloomington Herald-Times, Feb. 25, 2019
Capler seeks citywide representation with bid for council seat – Bloomington Herald-Times, Jan. 8, 2019
‘Nobody Is Above the Law’ protest gathers activists in Bloomington – Indiana Daily Student, Nov. 8, 2018
6 Democrats vie for open city council seat – Bloomington Herald-Times, Aug. 19, 2017
Candidate statement to fill council vacancy following Tim Mayer’s retirement – Monroe County Democratic Party, August 2017
Monroe County ‘die-in’ calls attention to health care concerns – Bloomington Herald-Times, June 26, 2017
Jean Capler: Social Worker – Bloom Magazine, June 14, 2017
BloomingOUT interview with Jean Capler –
Jean Capler to receive Woman of the Year honor – Bloomington Herald-Times, March 22, 2016
Guest column: Don’t justify discrimination with religion – Bloomington Herald-Times, Nov. 12, 2014
At least 19 same-sex couples marry in Bloomington – Bloomington Herald-Times, June 25, 2014