Conrad tops Leffler

Newcomer unseats Leffler

-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen
Democrat Webster County Supervisors candidate Niki Conrad, at left, Brenda Angstrom, Webster County Treasurer candidate, lower left, and Megan Srinivas, House District 9 candidate, center, watch some early election results come in Tuesday night with their campaign manager Shari Fitzgerald and former Senator Daryl Beall. The Democratic candidates gathered to await election results at Amigo’s.

Democratic challenger Niki Conrad won the seat for Webster County Supervisor District 4 Tuesday night with 1,274 votes to Supervisor Merrill Leffler’s 1,182 votes.

Conrad said she believes her win came from “putting in the work.”

“I was out there for seven months or so, and just getting out there and talking to people,” Conrad said. “And a lot of good support systems.”

Eugene Melvin Newsome, who ran for the seat as an independent, won 128 votes.

That’s 49 percent for Conrad, 46 percent Leffler, and 5 percent Newsome.

As Conrad gathered with her family and other Democrats at Amigos, Leffler was at the county courthouse, watching numbers come in with his family, his grandkids occasionally “helping” with the numbers.

Leffler has served on the board for six years. He said Tuesday night he has enjoyed working with everyone on the board.

“People voted. That’s the way it is,” Leffler said. “Good luck to Niki; she’ll do fine. That’s the way it goes.”

Attempts to reach Newsome were unsuccessful Tuesday night.

Conrad has been attending supervisors meetings for the past seven months in preparation. When the final results came in around 10:30 p.m., she said she felt relieved.

“I was relieved to finally get all the numbers in, and I’m eager to start the work,” Conrad said.

Her next step?

“Learn,” she said. “Learn as much as humanly possible. Talk to the fellow supervisors about tips and advice they can give me, and keep coming to meetings.

“I want to thank Merrill Leffler and Eugene Newsome for a hard-fought campaign. It was an honor to run this race with them,” she added.

Newsome has been running for city and county offices since his first run for school board in 1979.

District 4 includes the west and northwest parts of Fort Dodge, precincts 1, 3, 6, and 7.

Supervisor Keith Dencklau was unopposed in his race for reelection in District 1, the northeast part of the county. He won 2,642 votes, according to unofficial election results.

Dencklau has been on the board 12 years.