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Christenson trounces Fallon to become next Malden mayor

Posted by Matt Byrne  November 9, 2011 10:08 AM

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Matt Byrne

Gary Christenson addressed scores of his supporters Tuesday.

Gary Christenson drubbed Deborah Fallon in the race for Malden mayor, clearing more than twice the number of votes than his opponent in a decisive, across the board victory.

"One thing is clear. This campaign was not about me, it was about you, the people of Malden," said Christenson, who greeted throngs of waiting supporters at Anthony's of Malden after polls closed and the votes were counted. "Now it is you who will help move Malden forward," he said.

With 9,183 ballots cast, Christenson claimed 6,147 votes to Fallon's 2,907.

The blow-out comes after months of campaigning by both contenders, who between them raised and spent tens of thousands of dollars to succeed Richard C. Howard, who after 16 years in office is moving on to become town manager in Winchester.

Among six contenders for the at-large city councilor race, incumbents Craig Spadafora and Gregory Lucey held on to their seats with ease. Each pulled in more than 4,400 votes. The new face on the council will be David D'Arcangelo, who won 3,099 votes, winning over Robert S. McCarthy Jr., Gladys Rivera Rogers, and Christopher P. Simonelli to take Fallon's place on the council.

Peg Crowe will succeed Christenson on the council to represent Ward 1, where she won 660 votes to Michael E. Drummey's 286.

In Ward 2, where Paul A. Condon decided not to run for reelection, Steven Ultrino beat Eugene Pinkham, 814 to 315. In Ward 3, where Paul J. DiPietro retired, John P. Matheson topped former police chief Kenneth A. Coye, 770 to 592. James M. Nestor kept his seat in Ward 7, beating Jeffrey A. Donahue 401 to 238.

Neil C. Kinnon also will remain councilor of Ward 6, taking 961 votes over John P. Robillard's 448. In Ward 8, incumbent Judith Bucci beat William Roderick, 696 to 366.

Ward councilor races that went uncontested were in Ward 5 and 7, where incumbents Barbara Murphy and Neal Anderson kept their seats.

There was no competition in the races for School Committee, but three newcomers won seats unopposed: Jennyfer Cabral in Ward 1; Maria Doucette in Ward 2; and Deborah A. DeMaria in Ward 3. Committee incumbents who were reelected unopposed were Leonard V. Iovino in Ward 4; Adam Weldai in Ward 5; Stephen Patrick Winslow in Ward 6; Kevin Casucci in Ward 7; and John H. Froio in Ward 8.

Also passed were all three ballot questions. Question 1 lowered the threshold of votes that citizen petition ballot questions must achieve to pass, from 33 percent of the registered electorate to 25 percent.

Question 2, which reforms the way in which vacancies in elected officers are filled, as well as a third question that bars candidates from running for two offices at once also were approved.

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