After a slate of Norman City Council elections today, three newcomers will step onto the council as one incumbent was defeated and another was taken to a runoff by a group who tried to recall her last year.
Unite Norman, a group formed after the council’s decision to redirect more than $850,000 of a planned increase for the Norman Police Department budget to other city services, endorsed candidates in all five wards up for election. The same candidates were also endorsed by the Norman Fraternal Order of Police, according to a mailer on Facebook. One of the endorsed candidates defeated an incumbent, and another took an incumbent to a runoff. The other three did not win their elections.
In Ward 1, human resources professional Brandi Studley defeated Chris Lewis, who was endorsed by Unite Norman, by just 51 votes to finish with 51.7 percent.
Matt McGarry, a professor at the University of Oklahoma, took Ward 2, filing the seat vacated by David Perry, who passed away in August 2020. McGarry took 51.3 percent of the votes, defeating Jay Wendorff, who was endorsed by Unite Norman, and John D. Argo. (Former Ward 2 Councilman Joe Carter had been appointed to fill the remainder of Perry’s term, but Carter chose not to seek election.)
Rarchar S. Tortorello, a candidate endorsed by United Norman, won Ward 5, the largest ward in Norman. A U.S. Air Force veteran, Tortorello defeated incumbent councilmember Michael Nash and two other candidates, Lisa Meyer and Billy Davison. Nash had been appointed to the seat after Sereta Wilson resigned while Unite Norman was collecting signatures for her recall.
Ward 3 Norman City Councilwoman Alison Petrone will go to a runoff against Kelly Lynn, who was endorsed by Unite Norman. The group had attempted to recall Petrone from her seat, but a court ultimately ruled that not enough valid signatures were collected. The Ward 3 runoff election will be held on April 6.
Ward 7 Norman City Councilman Stephen Tyler Holman earned his fifth term Tuesday, garnering 55.1 percent of the vote to defeat C.L Jourden and Monica Marsh, who was endorsed by Unite Norman.
Full Norman election results from Feb. 9 can be found by visiting the Oklahoma State Election Board. All results are unofficial until certified by the board.