In the hours prior to the election, Daniel de Graaf took time to acknowledge the people who backed his first-ever run for a seat on the Ripon City Council.
“I want to extend a huge thank you to all who have supported me and believed in me along the way,” he said on social media. “No matter the outcome, I am thankful for the chance to run and represent my community.”
An engineer at a local firm that specializes in agricultural and civil projects, de Graaf grew up on his family farm in the Manteca area.
He was among the early leaders for one of the three available council seats, with six candidates in the running.
According the San Joaquin County Registrar of Voters office, de Graff tallied 1,898 votes. This was based on 3,713 of the 8,684 ballots as of 12:15 a.m. today.
Incumbent Leo Zuber – he’s the retired superintendent of the Ripon Unified School District – was a close second with 1,801 votes while Mayor Jake Parks was slightly ahead of Mark Winchell, who was a provisional appointment on the council following the sudden passing of Elden ‘Red’ Nutt in 2014.
Parks, who is a longtime Ripon resident and one-time business owner, had 1,563 votes over that of Winchell (1,389).
John Mangelos is the former owner of the Barnwood Restaurant in Ripon. At last count, he tallied 1,157 votes while retired police officer Mario Gonzales had 973 votes.
Absentee ballots, in addition, had yet been counted.