Framingham Mayor Yvonne Spicer lost her bid for a second term to challenger Charlie Sisitsky, while Somerville City Councilor Katjana Ballantyne was elected that city’s new mayor, as voters Tuesday decided mayoral races across Greater Boston.
In Lynn’s mayoral race, voters picked School Committee member Jared C. Nicholson to lead the city. Incumbent mayors Carlo DeMaria Jr. of Everett, Breanna Lungo-Koehn of Medford, Ruthanne Fuller of Newton, and Kim Driscoll of Salem won new terms in office.
In Lawrence, Brian DePeña defeated Acting Mayor Kendrys R. Vasquez, while Gloucester Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken was defeated by challenger Gregory P. Verga.
The elections come nearly two years after the outbreak of COVID-19, and mayors throughout the region have been on the frontlines leading their communities through the disaster and its economic consequences. Local leaders also face an ongoing national reckoning on race and equity -- issues that have been exacerbated by the health crisis.
Spicer, the first popularly elected Black woman to serve as a Massachusetts mayor, was defeated by Sisitsky, a former Framingham selectman. Sisitsky received 8,283 votes, while Spicer had 3,909 votes, according to the city clerk’s office. Nearly 31 percent of the city’s 39,897 registered voters participated in the election.
Spicer was elected Framingham’s first mayor in 2017, after voters decided to switch to a city form of government. In September, Spicer came in second place behind Sisitsky during a preliminary election.
Spicer, in a statement Tuesday, said she called Sisitsky to concede the race. She said serving as Framingham’s mayor has been the honor of her life, and listed several accomplishments that addressed what she called long-standing challenges in Framingham -- including education investments, strengthening its economy, and progress on environmental justice and sustainability.
“I am proud of successfully transitioning a 317-year-old town into a brand new city, of leading our city through an unprecedented pandemic and to have expanded inclusion with the most diverse administration, boards and committees in our history. I am proud to leave Framingham in a better place than when I took office,” Spicer said.
Sisitsky, in a statement, said people in Framingham want the city to do a better job on issues like supporting public education, caring for the environment, promoting economic development, and civic engagement.
“I promise you that starting right now, as we begin planning for the next four years of making sure that Framingham’s City government is working for you. We are going to be open, accessible, transparent and most of all present – working every day,” Sisitsky said.
Somerville voters elected City Councilor Katjana Ballantyne to serve as the city’s next mayor, succeeding Mayor Joseph Curtatone, who began serving as Somerville’s leader in 2004 and did not seek reelection.
Ballantyne received 9,997 votes, according to unofficial results from the city clerk’s office, and overcame City Council colleague Wilfred N. Mbah, who got 6,726 votes Tuesday night. The clerk’s office reported 18,167 of Somerville’s 59,328 registered voters took part in the municipal election.
Ballantyne, in a statement, said she is honored and humbled to become Somerville’s next mayor.
“Somerville voters showed they want bold, inclusive experienced leadership to move us forward on COVID recovery, affordability, climate changes, and more,” she said. “I look forward to continuing to work together to make Somerville a city where we can all thrive together.”
Mbah, in a statement, conceded the race and congratulated the mayor-elect.
“My campaign may have ended tonight, but our fight for affordable housing and racial equity here in Somerville continues. I look forward to remaining involved and organizing in this community that has given me so much and continuing to fight for bold progressive policies. Onward,” Mbah said in the statement.
Fuller, who was elected four years ago and ran for her second term, defeated former City Council colleague Amy Mah Sangiolo, who conceded the race Tuesday night. On Tuesday, the city clerk reported Fuller received 10,796 votes, versus 9,288 votes for Sangiolo.
Fuller, in a statement, thanked voters for reelecting her to a second term.
“All of us are so lucky to live in a city with so many people who are civic minded. I promise to be a Mayor for all of Newton. No matter who you voted for across all of the races, I pledge to continue to listen carefully and empathetically to each one of you,” Fuller said. “From Auburndale to Nonantum and Upper Falls to Oak Hill Park and everywhere in between, I will always hear your voice.”
In Lynn, Nicholson defeated City Council President Darren P. Cyr in that city’s mayoral race Tuesday. Nicholson received 7,962 votes over his competitor, Cyr, who received 4,532 votes. Nicholson succeeds Lynn Mayor Thomas McGee, who did not seek reelection.
The city clerk’s office reported 12,784 voters, or about 23 percent of Lynn’s 55,929 registered voters, turned out for the election. In September, Nicholson also placed first in Lynn’s preliminary election.
In Everett, DeMaria, who was first elected in 2007, defeated City Councilor Fred Capone in the incumbent’s bid for a new term. DeMaria had 3,735 votes, according to the city clerk’s office, while Capone won 3,525 votes.
DeMaria’s victory Tuesday comes amid an ongoing court fight between him and Everett’s city clerk, Sergio Cornelio, over allegations involving corruption, the Globe recently reported.
The city clerk’s office reported that 7,298 voters, or about 33 percent, of Everett’s 22,042 voters participated in Tuesday’s election.
In Medford, Lungo-Koehn defeated City Councilor John C. Falco, Jr. as she sought a second two-year term as the city’s leader.
Lungo-Koehn received 7,352 votes Tuesday and Falco had 5,768 votes, according to the city clerk’s office. In Medford, about 33 percent of the city’s 41,219 voters participated in Tuesday’s election. In September, Lungo-Koehn came in first in a field of three candidates that included Falco.
In Lawrence, DePeña received 6,093 votes versus 5,358 votes for Vasquez, according to the city clerk’s office. The city clerk reported 11,534 voters cast ballots in Lawrence Tuesday, where there are 42,105 registered voters. Vasquez took over for former Mayor Dan Rivera early this year.
In Gloucester, Verga received 5,829 votes to overcome Romeo Theken, who was first elected to a full term in 2015. On Tuesday, Theken secured 4,047 votes.
Gloucester’s city clerk reported about 45 percent of the city’s 22,145 registered voters participated in the election.
Salem’s Driscoll, who sought a fifth four-year term, received 6,472 votes, and overcame City Councilor Stephen G. Dibble, who got 4,516 votes.
Salem’s city clerk reported 34 percent of the city’s 32,257 registered voters cast ballots Tuesday.
Contested mayoral races were also held Tuesday in Amesbury, Attleboro, Beverly, Brockton, Fall River, Haverhill, Marlborough, and Newburyport.
Amesbury - Mayor Kassandra Gove, who was also elected in 2019, and Republican state Representative James Kelcourse were on the city’s ballot.
Attleboro - Mayor Paul R. Heroux ran for reelection against challenger Todd E. McGhee. Heroux was first elected in 2017.
Beverly - Mayor Michael P. Cahill was challenged by Esther W. Ngotho. Cahill was first elected in 2013.
Brockton - Mayor Robert Sullivan, who was first elected mayor in 2019, faced City Councilor Tina Cardoso.
Fall River - Mayor Paul Coogan was challenged by City Council President Cliff Ponte. Coogan was first elected mayor in 2019.
Haverhill - Mayor James Fiorentini ran for reelection to another two-year term against challenger City Councilor Colin LePage.
Marlborough - Mayor Arthur G. Vigeant, first elected in 2011, and David J. Garceau faced off Tuesday.
Newburyport - City Councilor Charles F. Tontar and School Committee member Sean R. Reardon ran for an open mayor’s seat. Incumbent Mayor Donna Holaday did not seek reelection.
Globe correspondent Charlie McKenna contributed to this report.
John Hilliard can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.