New faces fill City Hall: Newcomers sweep Muskegon City election


Johnson took the Mayoral election on Tuesday, winning with over 51% of the votes

Jarett Wall, Social Media Editor

November 2nd was election day for the city of Muskegon and voters had two city positions to vote on – mayor and city commissioner – as well as a proposed change to the city’s charter. Two city commission seats, as well as the Mayor of Muskegon, headlined the ballot. This new election featured many new faces as well as a historically high voter turnout of over 2,000 more voters than the previous election in 2019.

One of these new voters, resident Christian Jordie, cited the “mayoral race” as her reason for voting. “I think it’s important for people my age, in our thirties, to vote in local elections, not just for us but also for our kids,” Jordie added.

These races hold particular importance as the winners will get a voice in deciding the allocation of over $25 million in Covid-19 relief money.

In the mayoral race, incumbent Steve Gawron faced challenger Ken Johnson. Up and comer Johnson ran on a platform of “accountability and transparency,” according to his website. Johnson received over 100 more votes than Gawron, defeating the incumbent. The final vote tallies for each candidate ended with Stephen Gawron 2,147 votes to Kenneth Johnson’s 2,272 votes. This loss ends 20 years of public service and a mayoral tenure from 2013-2021 for Gawron.

In the city commission race, Rachel Gorman and Rebecca St. Clair beat out incumbents Daniel Sybenga and John Page. Gorman received 2,314 votes, St. Clair received 2,309 compared to Sybenga’s 1,943 votes and Pages 1,164 votes.

Muskegon voters also voted on a proposed change to the city charter to remove all gender-based language from Muskegon’s charter. This vote passed 2,897 to 1,409.

Muskegon’s end-of-the-voting day featured landmark changes in local politics that could have long-reaching effects across our community and city.