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News / Politics / Clark County Politics

Clark County election update yields minimal change

Gary Wilson still leads Victoria Bradford in Evergreen schools race

By Griffin Reilly, Columbian staff writer
Published: November 8, 2023, 6:43pm

A second round of general election ballots released by Clark County Elections Wednesday afternoon provided little change from Tuesday night’s initial results.

Evergreen Public Schools board director Victoria Bradford still trails challenger Gary Wilson for the District 3 seat, 52.62 percent to 47.38 percent. Were results to hold, Wilson would be unseating one of Southwest Washington’s longest-tenured public officials in Bradford, who was first elected to the school board in 1999.

Other incumbents falling short include Woodland Mayor Will Finn, who lost further ground in Wednesday’s batch of ballots, now trailing Todd Dinehart 69.47 percent to 30.53 percent. Battle Ground Councilmember Daniel Dingman also lost ground Wednesday and now trails Victoria Ferrer 59.79 percent to 40.21 percent.

Wednesday’s batch of votes brought turnout up to 20.92 percent of the county’s 332,500 eligible voters. The Washington Secretary of State estimates there is still 15,500 votes left to count in Clark County.

Clark County Elections Director Cathie Garber predicted voter turnout for this election would be around 36 percent, close to the average for off-year elections. Given the estimated number of ballots left to count, Clark County is likely to fall short of that estimate.

Nearly half of the 115 candidates vying for 85 seats across various city councils, school boards and other districts were running unopposed. As of Wednesday, only a handful of races across the county remained too close to call.

Close races

In Camas, incumbent John Nohr still leads Gary Perman for the Ward 1, Position 1 seat on the Camas City Council, 55.13 percent to 44.87 percent.

In Ridgefield, incumbent Lee E. Wells slightly gained ground over Mark D. Tyler for the Position 3 seat on its city council, now leading 50.81 percent to 49.19 percent.

In Woodland, three city council races remain close. In the Position 3 race, incumbent Melissa Doughty’s lead over Keith Bellisle slimmed, now just 50.08 percent to 49.67 percent. In the Position 4 race, challenger Douglas Freimarck Sr. gained ground over incumbent Aaron Alderman, now at 53.69 percent to 46.06 percent. The Position 5 race remains largely unchanged, with incumbent DeeAnna Holland leading 50.54 percent to 49.29 percent over Gabe Huston.

The only close Clark County school board race — other than Wilson vs. Bradford in Evergreen — is for Battle Ground’s District 2 Director seat, where incumbent Andrew Lawhon gained ground Wednesday but still trails Debbie Johnson 50.7 percent to 48.67 percent.