Denton municipal elections took place on May 4, with various city council and mayoral seats up for grabs around the county. With 421,505 registered voters, 22,597 ballots were cast in Denton County, which equates to 5.36 percent.
For Denton’s City Council, District 3 was a three-way race after incumbent Don Duff did not run for reelection and District 2 was decided as incumbent Keely Briggs ran unopposed. District 1 incumbent Gerard Hudspeth and District 4 incumbent John Ryan had challengers in George Ferrie and Emily Meisner, respectively.
Jesse Davis wins District 3 with 65.7 percent of the vote
With 2,622 votes cast in the race for District 3, candidate Davis secured 1,722 votes and with them, the race. Davis, who is an assistant district attorney for the county, is the current chairman of the Board of Ethics, a position that has been under some scrutiny during his campaign.
“I couldn’t be more proud of my team, and all the hard work they put into this race,” Davis said when reached for comment after his win. “I think tonight is definitive proof that Denton is ready to move forward together, put divisiveness behind us, and get to work.”
“I don’t think anyone has ever put this much work into District 3,” Farmer said to the Denton Record-Chronicle, while also commenting on the turnout. “The overall numbers do reveal the apathy that exists in municipal elections.”
Leggett, who formerly ran for Denton County Judge, held an election watch party Saturday night at Lucky Lou’s.
After the full results came in, Leggett said she felt fine.
“Because we moved the dialogue,” she said. “And I won a lot of precincts so we ain’t going away.”
Leggett said she really wants “to see city council.”
“So I’ll be on committees, I’ll stay where I am at the Animal Advisory Board,” Leggett said. “And I’ll keep moving that dialogue for another year.”
On Davis’s win, Leggett said she had to “be careful with that one.”
“I hope he understands that the heart of Denton is not a cold heart,” she said. “But one that beats with vitality and that he better treasure it.”
Gerard Hudspeth to serve second term
“I’m grateful for another opportunity to serve,” Hudspeth said when contacted for comment.
On election night, Ferrie hosted a watch party at Crossroads Bar while Hudspeth did not hold one.
“The whole point of this campaign is doing the work,” Ferrie said an in interview before the results were complete. “It’s meeting individuals in your community and outside of your community, within your district and sharing ideals and concerns, hearing about new ideals, new concerns and collectively working together to make things better. That’s the whole point of why I ran. I want a more diverse and inclusive table to sit on city council.”
Earlier today, Hudspeth posted to Facebook, saying, “Today is the day.”
“[Two] years ago, over 60% of the voters elected me,” he wrote. “It has been an honor to serve D1. It will take every vote today to be re-elected. I need you to tell your friends this race is close!”
Regarding his next step and the issues he campaigned on, Ferrie said “no matter what, I’m sticking to my guns.”
“[Fifty-three] percent of Denton [residents] rents,” Ferrie said. “Why don’t we have a renter on council? We are the majority. We need someone to advocate for safe and affordable housing because it shouldn’t be mutually exclusive. It’s time that someone threw their hat in the ring [and] regardless of outcome, I’m willing to put myself in front of the firing squad that is the many forums, the many questionnaires, the many articles written about me because I truly believe in what I’m doing and the people I’m fighting for.”
John Ryan holds off Emily Meisner to secure second term
“I want to thank them for allowing me to have two more years to serve the city,” Ryan said to the Record-Chronicle.
Ryan was first elected in May of 2017 and will be serving his second term with this win.
“They showed up tonight and sat with me,” Meisner said about her supporters to the Record-Chronicle. “I feel like we have planted seeds for positive change.”
Keely Briggs earns 815 votes running unopposed
Briggs, who will serve her third term after running unopposed in the race for District 2, earned 815 votes from constituents on Saturday.
“Thanks for the show of support in this election D2,” she wrote on Facebook after the election. “I know you didn’t have to turnout. I appreciate that you did. There is real work ahead for us – all of us – to address our shared opportunities and challenges. I am grateful to continue serving this amazing community.”
Featured Image: Gerard Hudspeth, Denton City Council District 1 incumbent, poses for a picture with a family who attended his campaign kickoff party in February. Image by: Isabel Anes.