There will be three new people on the City of Fitchburg Common Council at the end of the month

In District 1, longtime Board of Public Works chair Dave Herbst defeated incumbent Dorothy Krause by a vote of 375-323. Districts 3 and 4 will also have new alders in Jay Allen and Jim Wheeler. Wheeler ran for council unopposed, succeeding Tom Clauder, who had decided in December against running for another term; and Allen won against opponent Shawnicia Youmas by a vote of 576-396, who had told the Star earlier this spring that she planned to decline the seat if she won.

Dave Herbst


Jay Allen




Incumbent Julia Arata-Fratta is the only returning member of Council, as she won against Plan Commission member Steven Heller by a vote of 1,144-605.

Julia Arata Fratta


Two of the city’s school districts also had contested races for their respective school boards.

For the Verona Area Board of Education, incumbent Yanna Williams, Jen Murphy and John Porco won a three-year At-Large term from a five-way race for three seats that included incumbent Carolyn Jahnke and Nicole Vafadari. Meredith Stier Christensen, who represents an Outside Cities seat, ran unopposed.

At least one new board member was guaranteed to win, as Tom Duerst had announced in December he would not run for reelection.

For school district races, with 11 of 12 precincts in Dane County reporting, in Area I, representing the Village of Oregon, Mary Lokuta outpolled Josh King, 3,065-1,549. In Green County, two precincts went to King with a combined total of 106-81. One Rock County precinct in the district had yet to report as of press time.

In Area III, which comprises the towns of Brooklyn, Montrose, Oregon, Rutland and Union and the Village of Brooklyn, incumbent Troy Pankratz outpolled challenger Aaron Heisler in Dane County, 2,948-1,519. In Green County, Heisler won the two precincts with a combined total of, 95-88. One Rock County precinct in the district had yet to report as of press time.

The Madison Metropolitan Board of Education’s two At-Large seats had only one person apiece running – incumbent Savion Castro for Seat 2, and Maia Pearson for Seat 1, succeeding school board president Gloria Reyes.

Dane County also had an executive race, and voters could choose the next state superintendent of schools. The ballot also had a slate of Dane County circuit court judges, all of whom were incumbents running unopposed.

County executive Joe Parisi also won again for a third full term against challenger Mary Ann Nicholson with nearly 80% of the vote.

Parisi, who has held the role of executive for a decade, had centralized his re-election campaign around continuing to guide the county through the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects.

For state Department of Public Instruction superintendent, Jill Underly won over challenger Deborah Kerr in the state-wide race, succeeding Carolyn Stanford Taylor, who had been appointed in 2018 after former superintendent Tony Evers won the gubernatorial race.

Email reporter Kimberly Wethal at and follow her on Twitter @kimberly_wethal.

News Editor

Kimberly Wethal joined Unified Newspaper Group in 2018, where she serves as the news editor for four publications and primarily covers the Verona Area School District and the City of Fitchburg. She previously was an intern with UNG starting in 2013.