James Wallin will serve another four years as mayor of Brainerd.
Wallin, with 1,687 votes, defeated challengers Mike Jay, who had 1,104 votes; Kevin Goedker, 996 votes; and Don Crust, 680 votes, in Tuesday's election.
"I'm ecstatic," Wallin said of his victory. "I wanted to serve another four years and it's an honor to have the opportunity." Wallin has served for 25 years on the Brainerd City Council, the past four as mayor.
Wallin said the race was well run by all the mayoral candidates.
"I think it's a compliment to all the other candidates -- it was a neat race in that everyone was polite and cordial," said Wallin. "But I'm glad to be on top."
Second-place finisher Jay said today he thought he had a good chance to win but the votes fell short.
"Obviously, the people picked who they wanted most," said Jay. "It was great for me personally, meeting all the people and hearing their opinions and views. Hats off to James (Wallin). He's done a great job and he kept it clean. He's been fun to work with and I'm sure I'll work with him soon."
Goedker today said he was surprised by the vote total and though he wished it could have been higher he accepts the outcome.
"Looking at the big picture I'm satisfied that the people have chosen and I'm satisfied that they chose the current mayor," said Goedker.
Crust said he was happy for everyone involved in the mayoral race.
"The mayor's race was nothing but great," said Crust. "All four of us had a great time doing it." He said the election will set the tone of the city council for several years to come and he hopes Wallin and the newly elected city council members will rid the divisiveness from the current council.
Both Jay and Crust said they plan to stay active in local government, and may consider running for seats in future elections.
Wallin said he is looking forward to serving with newly elected council members. "It's going to be deja vu because Mary (Koep) was the one who got me on the council the first time," said Wallin.
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