Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Election Night 2015 in Olympia

Above: Myra Downing, Joe Downing, and Cheryl Selby meet at Pepper's Restaurant before moving the party to Charlie's Bar & Grill. Joe Downing won the Port Commissioner #1 race against George Barner, Jr. Councilmember Cheryl Selby won the mayoral seat against candidate Marco Rosaire Rossi.

By Janine Gates

The Thurston County Auditor’s Office called it an evening with a final tally at 8:15 p.m. but some local candidates celebrated well into the wee hours on election night 2015 in downtown Olympia.

Out of 164,555 registered voters, 39,634 ballots were counted Tuesday evening, with 15,000 estimated ballots left to count. The next ballot count will be Wednesday, November 4 at 6:00 p.m.

For the Port of Olympia, District #1 race, Joe Downing won, 58.86%, over incumbent George Barner, Jr., 41.14%.

For the Port of Olympia, District #2 race, E.J. Zita, with 49.04% of the vote, did not concede, calling it too close to call against Jerry Farmer, who received 50.96% of the vote. In actual numbers, it was 16,104 for Zita, and 16,735 for Farmer, a difference of 631 votes.

In the City of Olympia mayoral race, current councilmember Cheryl Selby won with 71.06%, against Marco Rosaire Rossi, who received 28.94%.

"Every election has its own personality and story to tell....What made a difference tonight was (a campaign with) somebody who was younger and brought a whole new dimension to the discussions around the issues, and that's a good thing. I had a worthy opponent two years ago and a worthy opponent this time and it made me a better candidate and I hope will make me a better mayor. I think my message resonated with people - one of balance and serving every segment of the community and that's what I hope to bring to my decision-making, along with the council...." said Selby late Tuesday night.

Above: E.J. Zita, left, and Marco Rosaire Rossi address supporters gathered at the Fish Tale Brew Pub in downtown Olympia Tuesday night. 

Rossi gave a rousing speech addressing the social and economic issues facing Olympia. "This isn't the end...we're just getting started...we fought hard and inspired the most marginalized people of Olympia...we will keep fighting...we are not done. This is just the end of a chapter...." said Rossi.

For City of Olympia council position #2, Jessica Bateman won, 59.5%, against Judy Bardin, 40.5%.

For City of Olympia council position #3, incumbent councilmember Nathaniel Jones won with 71.12% against Rafael Ruiz, who received 28.88%, even though he withdrew from the race. His name was still printed on the ballot.

Proposition #1, which addresses the formation of an Olympia Metropolitan Parks District, passed with 56.45% of the vote, and 43.55% voting no.

For more information and number changes, go to the Thurston County Auditor’s Office at

Above: Joe Downing, Cheryl Selby, Jessica Bateman, and Jerry Farmer pose for well wishers tonight. Bateman won her councilmember seat against Judy Bardin. Farmer felt confident that he has won his port commissioner race against E.J. Zita. Zita was not ready to concede the race earlier this evening.

"I'm excited and eager to be of service to the Olympia community....I'm excited about solving our community's challenges and all the opportunities we have before us," said Bateman.