Peninsula Daily News
Port Angeles City Council incumbents were leading their challengers while three appointed Sequim City Council members were lagging behind their opponents after the initial count of votes in the general election on Tuesday.
On the Olympic Medical Center commission, J. Thomas Oblak, incumbent in the Position 2 seat and a retired director of environment and safety in hospitals, was leading Jim McEntire, a U.S. Coast Guard veteran and retired federal senior executive, while Heather Jeffers, the executive director of a long-term nursing center, had a large lead over Karen Rogers, a small business owner, for the at-large seat.
As of Tuesday, the voter turnout was 37 percent, after 21,131 ballots of the 57,166 ballots provided to registered voters were counted, according to the Clallam County elections office. The next count will be by 4 p.m. Wednesday.
In neighboring Jefferson County, the voter turnout was 30.12 percent after 8,311 of the 27,596 ballots provided to registered voters had been received, according to the Jefferson County Elections Office. The next ballot count will be by 4 p.m. today.
Of the four seats on the Port Angeles City Council:
• Mayor Kate Dexter, incumbent in Position 4, was leading challenger John W. Proctor, a retired veterinarian.
• In the race for Position 1, appointed office-holder LaTrisha Suggs, a member of the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe who works for the tribe, had a slight lead over Adam Garcia, a U.S. Army veteran who works for the Veterans Health Administration.
• Position 2 incumbent Mike French, a small business owner, was running ahead of challenger John Madden, another small business owner.
• Position 3 incumbent Lindsey Schromen-Wawrin, an attorney, had a narrow lead over challenger Jena Stamper, a small business owner.
In Sequim, all appointed office-holders except Rachel Anderson appeared headed to lose their seats.
As of Tuesday, they were accruing fewer votes than their opponents.
• Sarah Kincaid, Position 2, challenged by Kathy Downer, a retired nurse.
• Mike Pence, Position 3, challenged by Vicki Lowe, who has worked in health administration since 1996.
• Keith Larkin, Position 6, challenged by Lowell Rathbun, a retired design engineer from Oregon.
Appointed office holder Rachel Anderson appeared to be holding Position 4 against Darryl Ness, who had a career on the railroad system.
Elected incumbent Brandon Janisse retained his Position 5 seat against Patrick Day, a former corrections officer.
Forks voters overwhelmingly retained incumbent Tim Fletcher as mayor over challenger Steve Wright.
Incumbent Joe Soha appeared to have retained his Position 3 seat on the Forks City Council against Sarah Holmes, who has worked in the hospitality industry in Seattle but is now a graphic artist and children’s author.
In the race for the Forks council Position 2 seat, Clinton W. Wood, director for facilities at Forks Community Hospital and a U.S. Army veteran, had a large lead over Josef Echeita, a counselor at Clallam Bay Corrections Center.
Sarah Huling, a diagnostic imager who has said she has resigned her position at the hospital effective Jan. 2, had a large lead over Linda Offut, a retired manager for the Forks Timber Museum and the appointed office-holder for the Position 1 seat on the Forks Community Hospital board.
On the Port Angeles School Board, incumbent Sarah Methner was leading Lola Moses, a member of the Lower Elwha Tribe and an early education disabilities manager, for Position 1, while Mary Hebert, longtime administrator and teacher, was outpacing Gabi Johnson, an accounting manager, for Position 2.
On the Sequim School Board, Kristi Schmeck, who can not serve because she withdrew prior to the primary election, won more votes than Virgina R. Sheppard, a small business owner. If her lead in the all-mail election holds, her position will have to be filled by appointment.
On the Fire District 3 commission, Jeff Nicholas, a retired U.S. Navy submarine captain, had a large lead over Duane Chamlee, a U.S. Army veteran and retired California deputy fire chief.
For more information, go to clallam.net/Auditor/Elections.html.