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Mayor Garcia winning re-election in American Canyon; Aboudamous, Washington lead for council
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Election 2020

Mayor Garcia winning re-election in American Canyon; Aboudamous, Washington lead for council

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American Canyon voters used the election to give ringing endorsements to the City Council incumbents and also add a retired police detective to the mix.

Incumbent Mayor Leon Garcia took a commanding lead over City Councilmember Mark Joseph in their battle to be the city’s mayor. He led Joseph 63% to 37% as of Wednesday morning.

Leon Garcia

Garcia

Meanwhile, incumbent City Councilmember Mariam Aboudamous had a big lead to keep her seat. Newcomer and retired Richmond police detective Pierre Washington seemed all but certain to win a second council seat with no incumbent running.

Garcia on Tuesday night declined to declare victory, despite being so far out in front of his rival.

“It’s ain’t over until it’s over,” he said, though the celebratory shouts from supporters at an outdoor gathering on Mosaic Court showed what they thought of the initial results.

Garcia sought to extend his long political career in Napa County’s newest city, founded in 1992. He was elected to the City Council in 2002 and became the city’s first — and to date only — elected mayor in 2006.

“I just work hard for the community,” Garcia said. “My heart is here. Community service has always has been an important thing for me.”

He talked to residents from all sorts of different backgrounds during the campaign, he said.

“One of my great joys is being out there and getting to know people,” he said.

Garcia addressed a comment sometimes heard during the campaign that it’s time for a change and new ideas. He depicted his experience as a plus during a pandemic and time of uncertainty.

“Change for the sake of change is not necessarily a good thing,” Garcia said.

Joseph served as American Canyon city manager for 12 years before resigning in late 2005. He was elected to the City Council in November 2010.

“Clearly, this is not the kind of close race I expected,” he said Tuesday night. “I think it’s a testimonial to the power of the incumbent.”

Mark Joseph

Joseph

He didn’t run with a radically different vision than Garcia’s or calling for wholesale changes in the city’s plans. Rather, he said he could provide leadership to move projects along faster, such as a traffic-relieving Newell Drive extension.

“It’s not enough to say, ‘I support the Newell extension.’ You really have to take the steps to make it happen,” Joseph said.

Joseph will remain on the City Council no matter what happens, given his term as councilmember has two years remaining. But Garcia would have been off the council with a loss.

That raised the prospect that people who liked both candidates might have voted for Garcia as mayor to keep both men serving the city.

“That’s a little discouraging,” Joseph said. “You’re not voting for councilmember, you’re voting for mayor. It’s not the same thing. I am sure there are a lot of people that thought like that.”

Joseph’s election night gathering also came with a COVID-19 twist. He stayed home and met with supporters on Zoom.

Garcia as of Wednesday morning had 3,335 votes and Joseph had 1,974.

Joseph raised more money for the election. Papers filed with the City Clerk’s office show he raised $33,000 this calendar year through Oct. 17, compared to $10,000 for Garcia. That doesn’t include money they might have had left over from past campaigns.

The City Council race had two seats on the ballot and five candidates. Aboudamous as of Wednesday morning had 38% of the vote and Washington had 31%. Among other candidates, Joey Palma had 16%, Eric Altman had 9% and Jason Kishineff had 6%.

Mariam Aboudamous

Aboudamous

Aboudamous, an attorney, was elected to the City Council in November 2016. The daughter of Palestinian immigrants grew up in American Canyon and was the first Muslim in the county to hold elected office.

Now she will enter a second term.

“I am honored, I am completely honored,” Aboudamous said on Wednesday. “I love this town. I am so pleased with the results, and I can’t wait to continue working.”

Her priorities for the coming four years are addressing traffic, housing and economic development, she said.

“Of course, with the looming pandemic, I want to make sure my residents are safe,” she said.

Washington had a career in the military and law enforcement and is head of security for a Genentech facility. He ran unsuccessfully for City Council in 2018.

Pierre Washington

Washington

He wants to have a more diverse city staff that resembles the diversity of the city. He wants to make certain police and fire have the equipment they need to do their jobs, Washington said on Wednesday.

“I get asked all the time about defunding the police department and that’s definitely not something on my agenda,” the retired police officer said.

He also wants to advocate for investments in parks and recreation, which he sees as important to the quality of life of youths and seniors. He doesn’t like how these are the first programs to get cut, Washington said.

John Tuteur, the county’s registrar of voters, said there were still an estimated 8,000 ballots countywide to count in the coming days.



Watch Now: How to deal with disappointment especially during election week

During a difficult and stressful election week, the need to discuss how to brace yourself for disappointment is probably more prevalent than ever. Buzz60’s Chloe Hurst has the story!

Napa County Election results, Nov. 3, 2020

NAPA COUNTY RESULTS
NAPA MAYOR Votes Percent
SCOTT SEDGLEY 16,319 64.16%
DORIS GENTRY 5,186 22.46%
GERARDO MARTIN 3,931 15.45%
NAPA CITY COUNCIL, DISTRICT 2 Votes Percent
BETH PAINTER 3,978 57.20%
DAVID CAMPBELL 1,431 20.58%
JIM HINTON 868 12.48%
PAUL STODDARD 678 9.75%
NAPA CITY COUNCIL, DISTRICT 4 Votes Percent
BERNARDO "BERNIE" NARVAEZ 3,205 68.91%
RENEE CAZARES 1,446 31.09%
AMERICAN CANYON MAYOR Votes Percent
LEON GARCIA * 3,335 62.82%
MARK JOSEPH 1,974 37.18%
AMERICAN CANYON COUNCIL Votes Percent
MARIAM ABOUDAMOUS * 3,262 38.16%
PIERRE WASHINGTON 2,617 30.62%
JOEY H. PALMA 1,329 15.55%
ERIC "EA" ALTMAN 800 9.36%
JASON KISHINEFF 540 6.32%
CALISTOGA MAYOR Votes Percent
CHRIS CANNING 1,136 100%
CALISTOGA COUNCIL Votes Percent
IRAIS LOPEZ-ORTEGA * 821 35.60%
MICHAEL DUNSFORD * 518 22.46%
LISA M GIFT 511 22.16%
SPIRO MAKRAS 456 19.77%
ST. HELENA MAYOR Votes Percent
GEOFF ELLSWORTH * 772 39.27%
MARY KOBERSTEIN 735 37.39%
PETER WHITE 459 23.35%
ST. HELENA CITY COUNCIL Votes Percent
LESTER HARDY 801 24.21%
ERIC HALL 777 23.48%
LESLIE STANTON 707 21.37%
ROSAURA SEGURA 614 18.56%
DAVID KNUDSEN 410 12.39%
YOUNTVILLE TOWN COUNCIL Votes Percent
MARJORIE MOHLER 614 30.65%
ERIC E. KNIGHT 551 27.51%
JEFF DURHAM 476 23.76%
SCOTT OWENS 362 18.07%
NVUSD TRUSTEE, AREA 4 Votes Percent
EVE RYSER 1,784 42.78%
ICELA MARTIN 1,476 35.40%
DEVIN MARTIN JONES 910 21.82%
CJUSD GOVERNING BOARD Votes Percent
RUDY GONZALEZ 862 24.81%
JULIANNE PAULA ELKESHEN * 764 21.99%
STEPHANIE ROTHBERG-ALLAN 731 20.52%
MATTHEW REID * 597 17.18%
MARK L. GALINDO 539 15.51%
CONGRESS VALLEY WATER DISTRICT, BOARD MEMBER Votes Percent
RENATE E. SICARD 59 45.74%
ROBIN FRANCIS 41 31.78%
ADAM JOFFE 29 22.48%
* incumbent

You can reach Barry Eberling at 256-2253 or beberling@napanews.com.

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Napa County Reporter

Barry Eberling covers Napa County government, transportation, the environment and general assignments. He has worked for the Napa Valley Register since fall 2014 and previously worked 27 years for the Daily Republic of Fairfield.

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