After the mail-in-ballot election earlier this week, three Riverside Wards solidified who will serve on the city council dais for the next five years.
With nearly 53 percent of the vote so far, Clarissa Cervantes took the lead for Ward 2 as the council member to replace Andy Melendrez, who served in the role since 2006. Chuck Conder (Ward 4) and Jim Perry (Ward 6) will keep their seats according to the first round of results from Tuesday’s voter numbers. A second release of votes will be made public today at 6 p.m.
Cervantes, who previously served as a legislative field representative to Melendrez at City Hall, will serve as the ward’s first Latina council member. In a public endorsement, Melendrez said he believes Cervantes is the best candidate to succeed him.
“Most people serve two, maybe three terms and then move onto something else, and I was fortunate to serve four terms,” Melendrez said. “In these elections, it’s extremely difficult to get to that 50 percent mark and she surpassed it. It shows her tenacity and that she’s extremely dedicated, and I think she’ll do the same as a council member.”
While Perry ran unopposed in Tuesday’s election, Conder ran for reelection against one other candidate. City commissioner, pastor and attorney Monrow Mabon came up just shy of 44 percent of the vote in his campaign for Ward 4 as of June 8.
Conder was first elected to city council in 2017 and said as of Tuesday’s results, he already received more votes than when he was first elected to the seat. “I’m extremely pleased that the residents of Ward 4 have the confidence in me to continue the work I’m doing,” he said.
As for moving forward, Conder said as long as he continues in the lead for the position, he looks ahead to potential projects that he hopes will benefit not only the residents of his ward, but the community of Riverside.