The local votes are counted, the numbers tallied, and the election that recorded the largest number of ballots ever in the state will usher in some new local elected officials.
The Winona City Council will include three new faces, including a new mayor, when each takes office. Mayor-elect Mark Peterson brought in 6,914 votes (54.57 percent), winning over Councilman George Borzyskowski, who netted 5,642 votes (44.53 percent).
Paul Double won the Winona City Council At-Large seat, while council member Al Thurley held onto his First Ward seat with 53.94 percent of votes cast. Current Winona Planning Commission member Pam Eyden won the Third Ward council seat in one of the tightest local races, garnering a win with 50.15 percent of the votes over Don Salyards’ 49.06 percent.
Another tight race unseated Winona County Board Chair Mena Kaehler, with challenger Steve Jacob pulling to victory with just an 86-vote lead. Kaehler brought in 48.95 percent in her second bid for county office, while Jacob secured 50.72 percent of the votes cast. Kaehler said she didn’t believe she would ask for a recount.
Another incumbent on the Winona County Board, Greg Olson, also faced a challenger for his Fourth District seat. Olson defeated challenger Walt Kelly by a wider margin, with Olson pulling 53.75 percent of the votes and Kelly trailing with 45.23 percent.
The Winona Area Public School Board will include three newcomers when they are sworn in in January: Brian Zeller, Jeanne Nelson, and Tina Lehnertz. Incumbents Greg Fellman, Michelle Langowski and Gary Shurson did not run for reelection, ushering in the list of new candidates for the seats. Lehnertz won by the widest margin in the school district election, with 69.40 percent of votes over her opponent Kenneth Kersting.
One of the closest elections in the area -- decided upon by a margin of just three votes—was in the race for two Minnesota City Council seats. Joseph Pellowski and Richard Hohensee each secured a win with 55 votes cast for both, narrowly defeating candidate Dave Kleinbach, who brought in 52 votes.
For more election results, visit winonapost.com, or check the Minnesota Secretary of State web site, where results may be viewed by precinct.