Duluth City Council at-large candidates react to primary election results

Published: Aug. 9, 2023 at 6:08 PM CDT
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DULUTH, MN. (Northern News Now) - Along with the closely contested Duluth mayoral race in Tuesday’s primary election, eight candidates were vying for two open at-large city council seats.

The four candidates who earned the most votes and are moving on to the general election in November include Arik Forsman, Lynn Marie Nephew, Jenna Yeakle and Miranda Pacheco.

RELATED: 2023 primary election results

Current city councilor Arik Forsman received the most votes Tuesday. He served on the council for five years and lives in the Kenwood neighborhood with his family. Forsman said he is celebrating moving on, but is also looking forward to the next three months.

“We’re just going to keep sticking to the same strategy, being out there, being present, listening first and taking the best ideas that we hear from Duluthians,” Forsman said.

Lynn Marie Nephew is supported by Forsman. She’s a realtor and has been working with housing nonprofits for the past 20 years. Nephew said she was “surprised” she got the second most votes and wants to continue to push for affordable housing.

“I’ll probably just broaden our issues a bit but stick with the same things,” Nephew said. “I mean, housing is just one of the biggest challenges in Duluth, and I have hit on that a lot.”

This year is Jenna Yeakle’s first City Council campaign, after applying for an open seat in the past. The Denfeld resident who works with the Sierra Club and an anti-racism organization didn’t end up being appointed that time around, but she says being a voice for the community is still her number one priority after the primary election.

“We are still going to continue to share our message about serving the needs of our communities,” Yeakle said. “Ensuring that the city is a good partner in building strong and vibrant neighborhoods.”

Miranda Pacheco works at Mash-ka-wisen Treatment Center and is also a consultant for Wealth Entrepreneurship Economic Sustainability. She released a statement on her Facebook praising voters.

“I want to thank every single person who voted for me in this primary,” Pacheco wrote. “The next fight ahead of me is the general election on Nov. 7th. I’m ready.”

RELATED: New law restoring voting rights for ex-felons brings opportunity to a Duluth woman

The four candidates will move on to the election in November, when voters will pick their preferred two candidates to fill the open seats.

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