Incumbents Kurt Reppart and Joe Jones were ousted in the midterm election. Three newcomers will be joining the City Commission in January.
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — On Tuesday, Grand Rapids residents voted in several crucial statewide and local elections, including choosing three candidates to serve on the City Commission.
The City Commission is comprised of six commissioners, two for each of the city’s three wards. Every two years, three commissioner seats are up for election, with one from each ward. Commissioners are only eligible to serve two terms.
In the 2022 midterm election, voters decided between Drew Robbins and incumbent Kurt Reppart in the First Ward; Lisa Knight and incumbent Joe Jones in the Second Ward; and Kelsey Purdue and Kenneth Wayne Hoskins in the Third Ward, two newcomers who were looking to fill the spot of Senita Lenear, who was not eligible for reelection.
In the city’s First Ward, a close race saw Robbins unseat Reppart, who was looking to serve his second term. The race was narrow, with Robbins receiving 51% of the vote compared to Reppart’s 49%.
On his website, Robbins says his prioritizes lie in improving policing, protecting the environment and supporting the city’s economy.
In the Second Ward, Jones was unseated by Knight by a significant margin, a big upset. Knight took home 65% of the votes, while Jones only secured 35%.
Knight is the executive director of the Girls Choral Academy. She’s an active member of the community, having served in leadership positions for many organizations, including as the chair for the African American Arts and Music Festival.
Knight’s campaign centered on public safety, addressing the need for affordable housing and environmental sustainability.
Kelsey Purdue, who won the Third Ward commissioner seat, is the project director for Kids Count in Michigan. She has emphasized her platform of safety and solving issues for constituents, even small ones like potholes or clogged drains.
She defeated fellow newcomer Kenneth Wayne Hoskins, a Reverend who previously served as an elected official in Grand Rapids.
Purdue took home the win with 56% of the votes, while Hoskins had 44%.
These commissioners will represent Grand Rapidians for two years before being up for reelection. They will begin their terms in January.
To see a full list of midterm election results, click here.
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