Malinowski, Anderson lead utility race

They're top two vote-getters out of 7, will face off in Nov.

By Laura McVicker, Columbian staff writer

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The crowd of seven candidates for a position on the Clark Public Utilities Board of Commissioners narrowed to two, with Jim Malinowski and Julia Anderson garnering the most votes, according to Tuesday's primary election results.

Of the 17,874 votes counted, Malinowski, a power utilities technology instructor at Clark College, captured nearly 30 percent of the vote and Anderson, The Columbian's former business editor, took more than 19 percent.

Malinowski and Anderson will square off in the Nov. 6 general election, when voters will decide the new commissioner, who will join Nancy Barnes and Byron Hanke on the three-member utility board.

The winner will succeed Carol Curtis, who did not seek re-election after 30 years of representing north Clark County.

Commissioners serve six-year terms in paid, part-time positions where they are compensated no more than $36,160 a year. They set utility policy, approve annual budgets, decide electric and water rates and select the utility's CEO.

Tuesday's top vote-getter, Malinowski, 74, received 4,509 votes. He was the only candidate who's previously run for the post and said he's the only candidate to regularly attend meetings. Malinowski once worked for Pacific Gas & Electric Company in California, serving in various roles including manager of transmission planning and manager of power control.

Anderson, 65, who received 2,935 votes, serves on a regional advisory board for Umpqua Bank and also does weekly business reports for radio station KXL 101.1 FM.

Trailing a close third was Sherry Erickson, a business manager at Erickson Structural Consulting Engineers, who captured about 15 percent of the votes. David Campos, a commercial loan officer, picked up 12 percent of the votes, and Jim West, a commercial real estate broker with Coldwell Banker Commercial, received 9 percent.

Philip Parker, a retired electrician, took nearly 8 percent of the votes and attorney Helen Nowlin received 5 percent.

Laura McVicker: www.twitter.com/col_courts;www.facebook.com/reportermcvicker;laura.mcvicker@columbian.com; 360-735-4516.