Election Central in the Denaina Center was quieter than most libraries Tuesday night, until about 10 :15 when suddenly a group appeared waving blue and white signs, chanting:
“East Side Pride, East Side Pride “.
Pete Petersen and his supporters burst into the room, the first of the candidates to declare victory in the three way race for District 5’s seat I. An elated Petersen said
” You know, I’ve been out there talking to people since last October. You know, when you knock on people’s doors and take time to listen to them, they appreciate it, and they get a chance to know you, personally, as a person. It’s not just an add that they see on tv, or an add that they hear on the radio, or a piece of paper in the mail. They’ve actually met you , and I think that makes a big difference. “
Petersen led incumbent Adam Trombley with 3085 votes against Trombley’s 2749 votes in the upset. Third candidate Mao Tosi took 20 percent of the ballot.
In another hotly contested race, the district 6 seat K , a little over two hundred votes separate candidates Bill Evans and Bruce Dougherty. Dougherty says the election marks his first try for public office
“Its been a wonderful experience, I’ve enjoyed it thoroughly. It’s a lot of hard work, but in the end, it’s a democratic process when candidates put themselves out to communicate with the voters. I think my message obviously resonated with a good chunk of the folks who are voting. And, so that’s comforting. And the three way race made the dynamic interesting. So in any event, it’s been a great experience and I’ve enjoyed it thoroughly. “
Third district 6 candidate Pete Nolan took 19 percent of the vote. The Dougherty – Evans race could be settled once absentee and questioned ballots are counted.
West Anchorage candidate Tim Steele garnered about double the votes as did challenger Phil Isley
” I did work hard. I campaigned last year, so it has been just a continuation. I just kept on campaigning. It’s a daunting process, to go out and face the voters and do the work that is necessary to do it. So my hat’s off to everybody that’s doing well. Petersen and Dougherty did well. “
Incumbents Pat Flynn, Bill Starr, and Elvi Gray-Jackson kept their Assembly seats.
There were no surprises in the Anchorage School Board race. Pat Higgins handily defeated two challengers to receive close to 52 percent of the votes for a Seat C win.
Incumbent Kameron Perez-Verdia tromped challenger Don Smith for school board Seat D. Perez – Verdia thanked his team for their work:
“Well I think our campaign worked really hard. We have a lot of people supporting us and we spent a lot of effort getting out to the people and walking a lot of streets and calling a lot of people and trying to get the word out, So I think we have worked really hard as a campaign to make sure people to know who we are. But of course I also think that the comments of my opponent in the media have highlighted our race.”
Perez -Verdia took 57 percent of the seat D vote.
City voters gave the okay to eight of nine ballot propositions. Only Prop 3, for five point five million dollars in capital improvement bonds, went down in defeat by the times the polls closed.