It was a busy day at the polls in St. Anthony November 5. Election judges at City Hall said they had seen a steady stream of voters until the final hour, when the last few people trickled in to cast their ballots. They estimated a turnout of 40 percent, a good number in a non-presidential election year.
Come January, Randy Stille, a 16-year city council member, will be the new mayor of St. Anthony, holding off challenger Nancy Robinett by 361 votes. He will replace Jerry Faust, who has been mayor since 2004.
Stille said he’s glad the campaign is behind him. “It was good to get out and talk to people and get to understand their complaints and concerns. I’m really looking forward to getting to work on the Walmart project and the Bremer Bank deal.”
Robinett congratulated the winners and thanked her campaign volunteers. “We ran a strong campaign, and we lost. Words cannot fully express my gratitude to the many volunteers, and the huge voter engagement, in support of my run for mayor. It has been worth the fight, even in a loss.”
The new year will also find a more diverse city council. Thomas Randle, who was appointed to the council in 2017, won a seat in his own right, with 1,806 votes. Joining him is Bernard Walker, who squeaked out a five-vote victory over incumbent Hal Gray.
Reached the day after the election, Gray said he was mulling the idea of asking for a recount. “I’m looking at options,” he said. “I generally think it’s [the poll results] pretty accurate. The vote speaks.” He said the anonymous pre-election letter sent to many St. Anthony households probably did not help.
There will be added diversity on the St. Anthony-New Brighton School Board, too. Ben Phillip, Cassandra Palmer and Lynne Penke-Valdes all won seats on the six-member board. Phillip is the first African-American to serve on the school board.
Below: St. Anthony Election Results (Source: Minnesota Secretary of State)