top of page


  • b-facebook
  • Instagram
  • Threads






Oakland County Republicans were beyond giddy in the summer of 2023 when the daughter of long-time county executive and prosecutor L. Brooks Patterson, Mary Patterson Warner, filed to run for the top spot in Oakland government. But then came the Facebook post in February of this year when Brooks’ daughter announced that she would no longer be pursuing the job her father had held for over two and one-half decades, declaring that the “financial backing” it would take to win such a contest “simply isn’t there.” That’s after she had initially contributed $10,000 of her own money, matched by another $10,000 from the county GOP. All told, some $77,000 was raised by January of this year, yet seasoned veterans knew full well that it could take five-10 times that amount to capture the executive post that has been in the hands of the Democrat party since Dave Coulter was appointed county executive in 2019 after the death of L. Brooks Patterson. For the curious among us, Coulter has raised over a half million in campaign dollars this election cycle and had $402,000 on hand at the start of the year. Not to worry, said county GOP chair Vance Patrick, who claimed the county party would have an “extremely strong” slate when the April filing deadline arrived. Instead, taking the Patterson-Warner spot on the ballot is Nik (Nikola) Gjonaj of Clarkston, currently a commercial insurance company executive who has not held an elective office in the past and, as of this writing a month after filing for the election, has no presence on social media or the internet that we could find.  One party insider said that Patterson-Warner’s problem was a lack of funding but blamed that on her advisors, saying she wasn’t “catching fire,” was given bad advice and wasted days after announcing early. As to Gjonaj, it was described by several party regulars as a “nice enough guy” but was “out of his element.” As for the November showdown, one GOP observer said the general election would be a “slam dunk for Coulter and the whole (Democrat dominated) board.” ‘Nuff said.



Sign up for updates


Use the form below if you want to receive periodic email updates from Oakland Confidential.

bottom of page