TRUSTED NEWS LEADER FOR COTTONWOOD, CAMP VERDE & THE VERDE VALLEY
Tue, June 25

New mayor council members elected in Cottonwood
Joens, Hollis and Kirby elected outright; Pratt and Altizer to face off in May

Cottonwood will have a new mayor in June -- the first elected female mayor -- Diane Joens.

Council candidates Ron Hollis and Duane Kirby will join Joens on the city council in the summer.

Joens, Hollis and Kirby won outright in the Cottonwood Primary Tuesday, receiving more than 51 percent of the total votes.

City Clerk Marianne Jimenez said there is still about 20 provisional and early ballots that need to be checked for validity; however, they will not throw off the numbers enough to change the outcome, she said.

Joens raked in a total number of 561 votes, or approximately 59 percent, according to unofficial election results posted on the city's Web site.

"I'm just so excited," Joens said. "It was a dream -- something I planted three or four years ago, and today it culminated into that dream and goal. I am honored that the voters put their trust in me. With that honor comes a duty, and I will do my best to fulfill that duty. I am eager."

Joens will be the first elected female mayor of Cottonwood. Linda Hobson served as mayor in the past, but she was appointed.

Joens previously stated her top priorities for the city would be to maintain sound city services, focus on water-related issues and ensure high quality of life for residents.

Joens beat out current Mayor Ruben Jauregui and current Vice Mayor Randy Lowe. As of Wednesday, Jauregui received 263 votes and Lowe received 109.

Jauregui and Lowe will vacate their seats on council at the first meeting in June.

Mayor Jauregui did not return phone calls requesting comment on the election.

"I know all the mayoral candidates worked very hard," Joens said.

Kirby and Hollis won outright, beating council candidates Terence Pratt and John Altizer in the Primary. However, three seats are up for grabs.

Therefore, a General Election runoff will occur May 15 between Pratt and Altizer to determine the final position.

"I thank the people very much for their support," Kirby said. "I will work hard to fulfill my obligation to the City of Cottonwood."

Kirby added, "I think we elected a capable mayor -- a lady I can work with."

Hollis received the majority of votes, 612. Kirby found support in 567 registered Cottonwood voters.

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