Joseph Villasenor, “Concerned Citizens for Phoenix” Busted on Campaign Mailer!

CONTACT: Eric Frederick Campaign

Team Frederick Responds to Outrageous Attack Mailer put out by former Mayor Gordon Aide

Phoenix, AZ – October 14, 2011 – Yesterday, an attack advertisement against Eric Frederick hit mailboxes throughout the valley. Like other pieces of literature my opponent and her supporters have mailed in this political campaign, this mailer contained outright lies, half-truths and twisted facts. This particular piece was paid for by a group named “Concerned Citizens for Phoenix” which is a political committee formed just 4 days ago that spent $14,000 sending these mailers out. The registered person and primary contributor to this campaign is Joseph Villasenor, a former top aide of Mayor Phil Gordon. As usual, this is a concerted effort by those in the political “in” crowd to try and purchase an election through any means necessary including slandering the opponent.

Incorrect Eric Frederick
On the hit piece, it claims that in January of 2010 I had a judgement filed against me through Maricopa Courts. Upon review of available court documents, the plaintiff on the judgement in question is AHCCCS and lists a defendant of Eric Frederick living in Mesa, AZ. Given that I have never been on AHCCCS to begin with, nor have ever lived in Mesa, AZ, this obviously is a different Eric Frederick. This clearly shows that my opposition is grasping at straws and operating in desperation.

The second claim is of a Failure to Appear in Court on January 18, 2010. This was a result of a minor traffic stop. The fine was paid and therefore, there was no need to Appear in Court. Claiming that I “failed to appear in court” is an extremely exaggerated distortion of the facts.

The third claim is that I took creditors to court to avoid paying debt. In 2006, a company I worked for called Mortgage Lenders Network went out of business suddenly and without warning. At the time they went under, they did not pay commissions or salaries to any of their employees. Instead of nearly $60,000 in commissions I had earned and expected, I received only pennies on the dollar while simultaneously being forced out of work. In the years that followed, my family and I slashed expenses at our household, worked multiple jobs at times, and made a valiant effort to stay afloat until the mortgage market improved.

In 2009, I opened my own business by taking over an existing office. When that occurred, I inherited all of the contracts, leases and obligations from the previous owner. Due to unexpected costs associated with the office and unanticipated personal medical expenses, in 2010, my wife and I filed for bankruptcy in order to protect my licensing ability for FINRA registration. However, as is allowed under Bankruptcy code, we are repaying every debt we incurred until they are paid off consistent with our ethics and responsibilities. Filing for bankruptcy is not illegal nor “above the law”–it is a way for people to manage the risks associated with opening a business.

It should be noted that my opponent, Thelda Williams, also filed for bankruptcy in 1991 while she was a sitting member of the Phoenix City Council.

Joseph Villasenor

Concerned Citizens for Phoenix
The group behind this attack ad is “Concerned Citizens for Phoenix”. This organization is funded by Joseph Villasenor. Mr. Villasenor previously served as a senior advisor for Mayor Phil Gordon and was relieved from those duties due to a domestic violence charge against him. He now considers himself an “advisor” to the City and continues to perform the dirty work required to maintain the status quo at the City of Phoenix.

The group has already declared spending of $14,000 to send out mailers. It also appears they have violated numerous campaign finance laws. Today, I will be filing a formal complaint with the Arizona Secretary of State’s office regarding these illegal expenditures. I will provide more details on that filing at a press conference today at 4:00 at the AZ State Capitol.

Real Issues
The City of Phoenix faces real issues. I have identified core elements of very needed reform. Many of these reform items including changing the City structure that has proved detrimental to the taxpayers of Phoenix while protecting the politically connected. Issues such as having the City Auditors reporting directly to the City Council and Mayor as opposed to the current structure of reporting to the City Manager threatens to destroy the cozy relationships that exist at City Hall. We also have persistent unemployment, record budgets, Emergency Food Taxes still in place, water rates that continue to climb unchecked, vacant homes in virtually every neighborhood and many more. My opponent and her supporters do not want to discuss these issues. It should be no surprise, then, that my opponent and her supporters will go to whatever extremes necessary to assure victory including lies and deception. Unfortunately, the court systems for pursuing slander charges do not move as quickly as an election.

Tomorrow’s Walk
Tomorrow, we will be having our weekly walk beginning at 9:30 am at the Bagel Gourmet. It is located on Bell Rd just west of the I-17 in the Frys complex. We will have walking lists as well as an opportunity to sign up for phone banking. As has always been the case, the volunteer efforts are the only way we will be able to combat the unlimited funds that my opponent clearly has access to. Please join us tomorrow as we work to bring New Leadership and Fresh Ideas to Phoenix!




  1. I figured since Thelda is so pro – photo radar that Redflex and American Traffic Solutions was behind this. Eric Frederick came out against photo radar and said that we need cops, not cameras. ATS and Redflex spend hundreds of thousands on astro turf front groups.

    Thelda is demented. Anyone who would tax baby food and baby formula is sick in the head. Think of all those on fixed incomes who have less food because of Thelda Williams. She is literally taking food out of our mouths.

  2. PolicyPundit says

    I think we’re changing the story here trying to make an oblique to talk about taxing baby food, when, in fact, it is just all food. That said, Thelda has changed course and joined with Bill Gates and Sal on this to say enough.

    Frederick has some real issues and keeps changing the story on his bankruptcy. He’s using Rachel Alexander’s webpage to broadcast his latest explanation – how credible is that?

    Sadly, the guy is a weak candidate, at best. If his bankruptcy was a decade ago, it would not be an issue. When you add the bankruptcy to the Failure To Appear and suspended driver’s license, then there is word his voting record on file with county elections is another problem – seems since he first registered to vote, he has not voted about half the time and he’s been registered in Phoenix in the latest stint only since late 2010, and then decides to run in 2011. By the way, the word is when he did live in Phoenix during the 2007 and 2009 city elections – he didn’t vote then, either.

    Frederick needs to focus on family, paying his bills and getting his own financial stability before he takes on the budget of the country’s sixth largest city.

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