One of Queen Creek Mayor Wendy Feldman-Kerr’s former political rivals organized a fundraiser in May for her next mayoral bid.

Phoenix-based lobbyist and consultant Stuart Goodman, who was campaign manager for Feldman-Kerr’s 2004 opponent, Kevin Petersen, said the effort came after a conversation with the mayor.

"The majority of our work in Queen Creek is on behalf of development interests," Goodman said about his firm, Goodman Schwartz Public Affairs. "We were talking . . . and she accepted our offer to hold a fundraiser."

Feldman-Kerr said she wanted to get started early on her 2006 campaign so she could spend more time encouraging residents to register to vote.

When Goodman offered to help, she accepted.

"In all actuality, it’s not that surprising," she said.

Feldman-Kerr said contributors donated about $3,000 at the May 17 event. Petersen was among them. She said many attendees also were past supporters and friends outside the real estate industry.

Goodman’s longtime clients include Petersen and the family of developer Conley Wolfswinkel, who was convicted in 1992 of bank fraud. A federal jury in Tucson also awarded $3 billion in damages that same year against Wolfswinkel, Charles Keating Jr. and others for swindling savings and loan investors.

Wolfswinkel’s sons and other family members are active in real estate investing in the Queen Creek area. Petersen is a land investor and real estate broker for the Wolfswinkels. He could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

In March 2004, while campaigning against Petersen, Feldman-Kerr questioned his motives for seeking office, noting that he represents landowners inside the town limits. She also criticized him for using $65,000 of his own money to finance his election bid.

Petersen went on to spend $76,080 on his campaign but lost the election to Feldman-Kerr, a financial planner who was first elected mayor in 2000.

Feldman-Kerr said Tuesday that her primary issue with Petersen was that he is a developer in the area, and as a result he would have been forced to recuse himself from many discussions and votes.

"I don’t have that problem," she said. The mayor also said she will not make decisions based on campaign contributions.

"I have a track record, and I stick to it," Feldman-Kerr said.

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