Greens gain seats in Portland voting
The Green Independent Party gained ground in Portland's municipal elections Tuesday, winning two seats on the City Council and maintaining four seats on the School Committee, according to preliminary results.
The city's elections are nonpartisan, but the Greens have made strides in recent years at the local level in Maine's largest city.
Results at press time did not include Cliff Island.
Two district seats and one at-large seat were open on each nine-member board.
District 1 City Councilor William Gorham, a Democrat, was unseated by Kevin Donoghue, a Green Independent, by a vote of 1,811 to 1,214. A third candidate, Kirk Goodhue, received 791 votes.
The council, like the city, is largely Democratic.
"Finally, the council has a chance to represent the people who distinguish Portland as a great city," Donoghue said. District 1 includes the East End, Bayside, the Old Port and the islands.
In the District 2 council race, David Marshall, a Green, received 1,889 votes while Cyrus Hagge received 1,404 votes and Michael Patterson received 873 votes. District 2 includes the West End and Parkside.
Councilor-at-large Nicholas Mavodones Jr. won re-election with 12,241 votes, while challenger Christina Feller received 6,872 votes and Andres Verzosa received 3,449 votes.
Mavodones, one of four at-large councilors, and Mayor James Cohen said they look forward to working with the first Greens elected to the council.
"We look forward to having two new members on the council," Cohen said. "I hope we're able to all work together on issues of importance to the people of Portland."
In School Committee races, Rebecca Minnick, a Green, won the District 1 seat with 2,064 votes; her opponent, Mavourneen Thompson, received 1,415 votes.
"I want to open the committee to a lot more public input and look for creative ways to keep our neighborhood schools open," Minnick said.
Meanwhile, District 2 committee member Stephen Spring, a Green, received 1,730 votes and was unseated by Robert O'Brien, who received 1,944 votes.
The open at-large seat on the committee went to Sarah Thompson, who received 10,378 votes, while Teri McRae received 6,270 votes and Kevin Gardella received 3,982 votes.
"I'm ready to serve and make sure the community is heard," Thompson said.
Staff Writer Kelley Bouchard can be contacted at 791-6328 or at: