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New faces elected to Rock Island City Council
ROCK ISLAND

New faces elected to Rock Island City Council

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Voter stickers sit on a table at Rock Island Township Hall in Rock Island.

Rock Island City Council is poised to welcome some new aldermen following Tuesday night's municipal election. 

1st Ward

Moses Robinson was elected as 1st Ward Alderman, defeating Jason Hayes with 81% of the vote to 19% for Hayes. Robinson captured 287 votes, while Hayes earned 68 votes. 

Incumbent 1st Ward Alderman Ivory Clark chose not to run for reelection. 

Robinson had already established a strong community presence. He is the son of Martin Luther King Jr. Center founder Ida Robinson, serves on the city's parks and recreation board and is director of the Metropolitan Youth Program. He currently works as a data technician at the Rock Island Arsenal.

3rd Ward

In the city's 3rd Ward, Judith Gilbert soundly defeated Jeffery Westerfield with 63% of the vote to 37% for Westerfield. Gilbert earned 579 votes to 334 votes cast for Westerfield. 

Gilbert comes to city council with years of municipal experience. She served as Rock Island city clerk for three years until her resignation in December 2019. Prior to that, she served as economic development director and TIF coordinator for the city of Colona and four years as a Bishop Hill Village Board trustee.

Gilbert and Westerfield have already had a showdown of sorts when Gilbert challenged Westerfield's candidacy petition in December, alleging he was a resident of the 2nd Ward and therefore ineligible as a 3rd Ward candidate. 

Gilbert had presented evidence showing Westerfield paid property taxes and was a registered voter in the 2nd Ward for the November general election. After three electoral board hearings, the board voted 2 to 1 to allow Westerfield to remain on the ballot.

Gilbert said one of her goals would be to improve communication between council members and the residents they serve. 

Incumbent 3rd Ward Alderman James Spurgetis did not run for reelection. 

5th Ward

Incumbent 5th Ward Alderman Dylan Parker defeated challenger Laurie Figley, with 74% of the vote to 26% for Figley. Parker earned  458 votes overall, compared to 158 votes for Figley. 

Parker was first elected to council in 2017. He said he has worked hard to advance environmental projects in the city, improve infrastructure and push for economic development projects. 

Going forward, Parker said he looks forward to working with the downtown director to create a more vibrant downtown with a variety of amenities like housing, office space, restaurants, music festivals, more daytime activity and family-friendly businesses and events.

7th Ward

Alderman Dave Geenen, Ward 7, was unopposed. 

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