ST. LOUIS – Democratic nominees were victorious in two special elections for aldermen Tuesday.
In the north side’s Fourth Ward, Democrat Dwinderlin (Dwin) Evans of the 4500 block of Elmbank Avenue was unopposed in the election to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Alderman Samuel Moore. The only candidate who filed, she received 352 votes. There were 28 write-in votes.
On the south side, Democrat Vicky L. Grass of the 3800 block of Louis Street defeated Republican Craig M. Westbrook of the 4900 block of Blow Street in the contest to fill the empty 12th Ward seat formerly held by Larry Arnowitz. Grass received 708 votes to Westbrook’s 501 votes.
Arnowitz resigned on March 3 when he was indicted on one count of mail fraud related to his alleged illegal use of campaign funds for his personal use and expenses. Moore died March 25.
The special elections should have been in May but were delayed because of COVID-19.
Here is information about the winners:
Dwinderlin EvansA lifelong city resident, Evans spent two years as a teacher in the city schools and 32 years teaching in the Normandy School District. A graduate of O’Fallon Technical High School, she attended Harris Teachers College and Lindenwood University.
Evans became Fourth Ward Committeewoman in 2016 and started attending Board of Aldermen meetings about 2018. She became Moore’s choice to replace him.
As alderwoman, Evans said, she will seek to carry out Moore’s vision for the ward.
“The Fourth Ward has been dismantled over the years,” Evans said.
She’d like to see cameras as a way to catch people who dump things in the wards.
She said she had seen too many instances in which the south side got development bills and the north side didn’t. She’d like to have the whole city get the money.
“The people here want to have a nice, safe place to live,” Evans said. “We want to get that development up and going.”
Vicky GrassRepeated efforts to contact Grass were unsuccessful. However, on her website and Facebook page, the Democratic candidate for 12th Ward Alderman says she’s been a resident of the ward for 25 years and retired in 2015 after 29 years with the Firemen’s Retirement System of St. Louis. The last 15 years, she was its executive director.
In a video on her Facebook page, she says she is a single mother of two, has one grandchild and attended St. Elizabeth Academy.
“Now that I’m retired, I have plenty of time to dedicate myself to the residents of the 12th Ward,” she says in the video.
“I would like to make sure that our first responders have what they need to continue to do their jobs effectively and safely,” she says. “I would like to see our streets maintained, and I would also like to make sure that our tax dollars are used appropriately in the neighborhoods.”
The new aldermen will serve until the next general municipal election, on April 6, 2021.
They will be sworn in soon, said Mary Goodman, legislative director for Board of Alderman President Lewis Reed. Before that happens, the St. Louis Board of Elections Commissioners will have to certify the results, and the Board of Aldermen’s Engrossment, Rules, Resolutions and Credentials Committee will have to accept their credentials.