Silverthorne Continues in Father's Footsteps, DeMarco Successful on Second Try
City gets a new mayor and a new council member.
Fairfax City voters chose new leadership and added a brand new member to the council Tuesday. Scott Silverthorne followed in his father's footsteps to become mayor, while Michael DeMarco won his first ever term on the council.
"Politics in the City of Fairfax is a family business," Silverthorne told the Old Town Hall crowd after the last votes were counted. He thanked his 87-year-old mother, who trekked from Arizona to be with him on election night.
Bette Silverthorne presented her son with the gavel his father used during his two terms as mayor starting in 1978.
David Meyer won the most votes of the council candidates. He pledged to lead the council in helping the less fortunate within the city limits, "from those on free and reduced lunches to those sitting on a curb at Fairfax Circle."
DeMarco finished in a strong second out of the eight candidates for city council. This was his second try at running for council. The first time he fell just short of securing one of the council's six seats.
"I will work hard to try to do the best for this community," he said. "I feel passionate about that."
Dan Drummond came in third. He bounded up on the Old Town Hall stage and cried as he thanked his family and voters for their support.
"You lifted me up," he said. Drummond, along with many other candidates thanked current Mayor Rob Lederer for his service and personal guidance. "Many men have filled a [father-like] role in my life. One of them was Rob Lederer. 'I love you.'"
Ellie Schmidt followed, praising her mother for inspiring her to start community service at a young age. She said service is what her time on the council has been all about.
Steve Stombres thanked the other two candidates, Gary Perryman and Catherine Read, for running even though they were not elected.
"It's one of the most vunerable feelings out there," he said of waiting for the results on that first election night. "It's a lonely feeling, but also a feeling that you're part of the community."
Jeff Greenfield, the last of the elected, asked his wife for little more time with his campaign. "I could use a few more days of taking down signs and then I'll be home doing my honey-do list," he said.
Read fell about 400 votes shy of a council seat. She got a room full of applause and cheers when she took the stage. "I must be the most popular non-winner in the room," she said.
She added that Fairfax City won't see the last of her just yet. Her time knocking on doors and talking with voters helped her create a long to-do list she plans on completing even without a term on the council.
"There's ways to change the community whether you have a title or you don't," she said. "Gandhi changed the world and he never won a city council seat."
Perryman ranked last. "I made every mistake running I could have made," he said. Yet, Perryman added, he intends to run again in two years.
Mayoral candidate Jerry O'Dell was booed and yelled at by the crowd when he started personal attacks against his opponent.
"I didn't come here to be uncritical," he said. "I don't believe in political correctness. I believe in moral principles. And those should be shown by our leaders."
What he said after that was mostly drowned out by his angry audience.
Click here for vote totals.