The Edmonds City Council will get at least one new face, and possibly two, come January 2016.
In the quest to fill the Edmonds City Council Position 5 seat being vacated by one-term councilmember Joan Bloom, retired Qwest Communications Executive Dave Teitzel defeated Edmonds newcomer Alicia Crank, receiving 3,251 votes to Crank’s 1,321 in election night ballot returns.
“Edmonds is on the threshold of great things,” said Teitzel, speaking to a gathering of more than 100 people, including several council candidates and their supporters, at Portofino Pizza and Pasta after the returns were announced. “This so surreal! After all the months of work, we’re finally here.”
For Council Position 7, Edmonds Planning Board Chair Neil Tibbott had a 602-vote lead over incumbent Lora Petso, according to the initial results released by the Snohomish County Elections Office.
Petso, an attorney who with her husband runs a pension consulting business, received 2,039 votes to 2,641 for Tibbott, who serves as executive director for an organization that provides human resource services for nonprofits. Petso was originally elected to the Edmonds City Council in 2000 but lost her bid for re-election in 2003. She was appointed by the council in 2010 to fill a vacant seat, and elected by voters in November 2011 for a four-year term.
Tibbott gave the thumbs-up sign as the returns at Portofino indicated a lead over his opponent. “I had a great team working for me throughout the campaign,” he said. “I know I wouldn’t be here tonight without all their support and hard work.”
Petso, who traditionally spends election evening taking down her campaign signs, did not immediately return a phone call requesting a comment on the initial results.
Crank spent the evening at a campaign event at Jersey’s in Shoreline, where supporters were gathered both for her race and that of Carin Chase, a candidate for Edmonds School Board who was holding a slim lead over opponent Bill Willcock for the vacant District Director 1 position.
“Change is coming to Edmonds, even if it’s not coming tonight,” said Crank, a recent transplant to Edmonds from Mountain View, Calif. “I’ll continue to serve the citizens of Edmonds on the Sister City Commission, the Senior Center Board of Directors, and as a member of the Edmonds Rotary. I love it here, and I’m not going anywhere.”
Teitzel, a 25-year Edmonds resident who ran on the campaign theme of “Be Included,” retired recently following a 35-year career at Qwest Communications, spending the last 10 years as the organization’s Public Policy director.
For Council Position 2, incumbent Mike Nelson defeated challenger Alvin Rutledge, a long-time community volunteer. Nelson, who serves as Executive Director of Service Employees International Union, Washington State Council, was appointed to fill the remaining two years of Strom Peterson’s term, after Peterson was elected to the state House of Representatives. He received 3,647 votes to 851 votes cast for Rutledge.
Edmonds Mayor Dave Earling and City Councilmembers Diane Buckshnis and Tom Mesaros were all running unopposed in Tuesday’s election. “I’m really excited about working with this council over the next four years,” Earling told the fired-up crowd at Portofino’s.
“With this election we have a council that promises to work together and do good things for the City of Edmonds,” added Mesaros. “I look forward to this promise being fulfilled.”
Edmonds School District
Director District 1
Carin Chase held a narrow lead, 50.99 percent to 48.63 percent, over Bill Willcock, a 284-vote advantage in initial results. Chase is long-time Democratic activist in the area with diverse work experiences while Willcock, who has a background in high tech and finance, touted his involvement in starting the Edmonds-Woodway Booster Club to support activities and academics.
Director District 3
Long-time incumbent Gary Noble had a big lead Tuesday, 65.4 percent, to 34.24 percent for Mary Murphy.
Susan Phillips, running unopposed, was re-elected to the Director District 4 position she had held prior to resigning last year because of a family emergency.
Diana White was re-elected to the Director District 5 position after running unopposed.
As votes continue to be counted, election results will be released daily by the Auditor’s Office. The next report will be at 5 p.m. Wednesday. You can see complete election returns from Tuesday here.
— By Teresa Wippel with reporting and photography by Larry Vogel