All four of the candidates who ran for election to Fitchburg’s Common Council for the first time this spring won – even though one is an incumbent.
Joe Maldonado, Gabriella Gerhardt and Randy Udell won the seats in Districts 1, 2 and 4, respectively, after results of the April 7 election were tabulated Monday, April 13. Ald. Shannon Strassman (Dist. 3) was formally elected to her seat for the first time, as well, after being appointed to the seat in August 2019 when a former alder vacated it.
The result means incumbent Ald. Dan Bahr (D-2) won’t be coming back, after Gerhardt beat Bahr 1,767-927. Bahr, the council president, was running for his third term.
Two other incumbents – Alds. Anne Scott (D-1) and Janell Rice (D-4) – will not be back. Both already had decided they’d be saying goodbye, after they filed non-candidacy paperwork last fall.
The District 1 election was decided by a 2-1 margin, as Maldonado defeated Dave Herbst 824-412.
The Districts 3 and 4 races were much closer. Strassman defeated Dave Carlson in District 3 1,045-690, and coming out on top of what initially was a three-way race before a primary in February, Randy Udell defeated Scott Lehmann 1,417-1,143.
Mayor Aaron Richardson ran unopposed for a three-year term after one year in office, the result of a change in Fitchburg’s election schedule. It was also the first time in four elections the incumbent mayor was not ousted.
The newly elected alders will be sworn in at the April 28 council meeting.