SAN DIEGO (CNS) – The future of San Diego’s city government is a little more in focus Wednesday, with runoffs taking shape in five City District up for grabs thanks to departing incumbents.
Council members Barbara Bry and Scott Sherman — from District 1 and 7, respectively — both ran for mayor, while District 5’s Mark Kersey is termed out, District 3’s Chris Ward ran for state Assembly and District 9’s Georgette Gomez ran for Congress.
A total of 28 candidates were battling for the open council seats in Tuesday’s election — eight in District 1, seven in District 9, five in District 3 and four each for Districts 5 and 7.
The two candidates receiving the most votes in each race will advance to the November general election.
Bry has been representing District 1, which covers La Jolla and the coast up to Del Mar, Carmel Valley and University City, since 2016. In the race to replace her, civil engineer/business owner Joe LaCava topped the field and is bound for the November runoff. With all precincts reporting, Aaron Brennan, a firefighter and Naval Reserve Officer, was in second place, but only about 100 votes ahead of Will Moore, a small business attorney. It wasn’t immediately clear how many provisional and mail ballots might still be pending.
Ward has also held his seat since 2016 representing District 3, which covers Central San Diego, including Old Town, Downtown, North Park, Normal Heights and Balboa Park. Stephen Whitburn, a community nonprofit director, topped the pack of candidates to reach the November runoff, and he will face Toni Duran, a state Senate district representative.
District 5, which covers north San Diego, including Black Mountain Ranch, Rancho Bernardo and Rancho Penasquitos, has been represented by Kersey since 2012. Marni von Wilpert, a deputy city attorney, and Joe Leventhal, an attorney and small business owner, will square off in the November runoff to fill the seat.
Sherman has been in his seat since 2012 representing District 7, which covers north-central and northeast San Diego, including Mission Valley, Linda Vista, Serra Mesa and Tierrasanta. Vying in the runoff in that district will be Raul Campillo, a deputy city attorney, and Noli Zosa, a small business owner.
Gomez, the council president, has represented District 9, covering east-central San Diego, including Kensington, College Area, City Heights and Southeastern San Diego, since 2016.
Kelvin H. Barrios, a community outreach director, topped the field of candidates and is bound for the runoff against Sean Elo, a San Diego Community College District Board of Trustees member.
City Attorney Mara Elliott, the only city official seeking reelection, easily advanced to the November runoff, in which she will face attorney Cory Briggs, who founded Briggs Law Corporation in 2002.