BELOIT — Three new faces are ready to join the Beloit City Council. Nancy V. Forbeck, Clinton Anderson and Sherry Blakeley were victorious during elections Tuesday night.
Forbeck, 71, received 24.05 percent, or 1,572 votes. The lifelong Beloiter was the top vote-getter of the evening. She began her career as an English teacher and later went on to serve as the first executive director of Visit Beloit. Forbeck was instrumental at the beginning of Beloit Riverfest. She then served as the executive director of the Greater Beloit Chamber of Commerce for 12 years, retiring in 2008.
Forbeck said during her campaign that she’ll place focus on increasing revenue rather than cutting services in the city budget. She said looking at housing stock in the city could be one area that needs attention. Forbeck also would like to make sure the city is highlighting positive actions local organizations are doing.
“(Winning the election) is wonderful,” Forbeck said. “It’s a little bit humbling, but I’m very excited to get started.”
Forbeck said she’s excited to get up to speed on what’s happening in the city, including budgetary issues and more. She said she has no axe to grind and is ready to get involved with city government.
Clinton Anderson, 23, also a lifelong Beloiter, secured 19.89 percent, or 1,300 votes. Anderson is a lifelong Beloiter who currently is a student at University of Wisconsin—Whitewater. He expects to graduate with a degree in psychology in the spring of 2018.
While campaigning Anderson said his goals include removing the stigma that Beloit is associated with crime. He wants to focus on Beloit’s improvements, like the revitalization of downtown and building up Gateway Business Park, as well as showcasing the Rock River and its assets. Anderson also said reviewing tax incremental financing districts to find more revenue for the city should be done.
“We have to find real justifications for spending what we do within the budget,” Anderson said. “We have to be responsible with what we do have.”
Sherry Blakeley, 64, secured 15.40 percent, or 1,007 votes. Blakeley has lived in Beloit since 1974.
Blakeley ran with a platform focusing on neighborhood development, promoting economic growth and stability and improving communications between citizens and city hall.
“I really am thrilled and want to thank the voters of Beloit,” Blakeley said after the results were tallied. “I’m so excited.”
Blakeley said she plans to take a one-day hiatus from campaign work and then return to canvassing local neighborhoods on Thursday. She hopes to talk with more residents about what they hope to see out of the city council so she can start addressing issues as soon as she joins the council.
“I really look forward to hearing more from the people of Beloit,” she said. “Now that I know I can do something about their concerns, I’m going to start to make a game plan on how to get more of their needs.”
Also on Blakeley’s agenda is to make the rounds at city hall to introduce herself to workers in the various departments and to meet with City Manager Lori Curtis Luther and outgoing Board President David Luebke.
Other candidates running for the council’s three open seats were Ana Kelly, Rose Richard and Jeanette Hansen. Kelly received 14.53 percent, or 950 votes. Richard received 14.33 percent, or 937 votes. Hansen received 11.41 percent, or 746 votes. Twenty-five ballots were for write-in candidates.