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VIDEO: Nathan Pachal wins Langley City mayoralty race

Mayor-elect will be working with a council of half incumbents and half newcomers
Nathan Pachal, the newly-elected mayor of Langley City, was celebrating with supporters Saturday night, Oct 15. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Langley City mayor-elect Nathan Pachal is promising a more collaborative approach to government.

“I’m looking forward to working together with everyone in a good way,” Pachal told the Langley Advance Times Saturday night, Oct. 15, after he defeated incumbent Mayor Val van den Broek 2,434 to 1,290, taking 64 per cent of the ballots cast.

Pachal promised to “figure out the things where there’s common ground,” listing the imminent arrival of SkyTrain as one of the biggest challenges the City faces.

On social media, he thanked voters for putting their trust in him.

Mayor van den Broek, who was dealing with a family emergency, could not be reached for comment immediately after the results.

Pachal will be working with a council of three incumbents — Paul Albrecht, Rosemary Wallace, and Teri James — and three fresh faces — Mike Solyom, Leith White and Delaney Mack.

Albrecht topped the council polls with 1,905 votes, or 50 per cent of all ballots.

“I’m looking forward to the next four years with a leader we can all support,” Albrecht said, describing himself as “humbled” by the support he received.

READ ALSO: Langley City elects Nathan Pachal mayor

Newcomer Mike Solyom, who was second in the polling for councillors with 1,659 votes or 44 per cent of ballots cast, was “pleasantly surprised” by his success on his second try for council. He said Pachal had helped him by providing advice about how to run an effective campaign.

Solyom called the turnout “shockingly low,” given there were 30,000 eligible voters in Langley City.

Incumbent councillor Rosemary Wallace, third with 1,638 votes or 43 per cent, was at Pachal’s election night event, and noted that the mayor-elect delayed celebrating his win, until all the results for the rest of council were in.

Wallace, who has been dealing with a severe hip injury that prevented her from door-to-door campaigning, was “grateful” for the support.

She praised Pachal for bringing an “inclusive” approach to council.

“I’m looking forward to moving forward,” Wallace commented.

Incumbent Teri James, fourth with 1,615 votes or 43 per cent, was looking forward to a Pachal mayoralty, saying “I am excited to work with a cohesive council who will get things done.”

“I’m honestly looking at the next four years with optimism,” James said.

READ ALSO: Langley Township: Eric Woodward declared mayor

Fifth-place councillor-elect Leith White (1,524 votes or 40 per cent) said he was “honoured by [the] people’s vote of confidence, as we all should be, and will work to return that in full and more.”

He added there was much to do in the days ahead. “My first platform commitment was to work towards effective leadership and I’m fully committed to that. The sprint is finished. Now the marathon.”

Sixth-place Delaney Mack (1,416 votes or 38 per cent), who won her first time out, said she ran “to be the change I wanted to see.”

“I’m honoured, I’m humbled, I’m happy overall,” Mack said.

Mack promised to “have an open ear for everyone,” adding she hoped “the community will move forward in a unified way and work together.”

Both White and Mack were endorsed by van den Broek.

Incumbents Rudy Storteboom and Gayle Martin will not be returning, and both doubted they will be running again.

Storteboom noted he has the “dubious distinction” of having lost three City elections, perhaps the most of any council member in City history, and it was “not likely” he would try again.

“[Voters] have delivered my retirement,” Storteboom remarked.

“He thanked his “family, friends, supporters and voters,” even those who didn’t vote for him, because they exercised their democratic rights.

Martin expects she will remain active in the community, but not as a councillor.

“I’ve had 32 good years,”Martin said.

”I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished over that time.”

Both Martin and Storteboom said they were happy that Pachal had won.

READ ALSO: Contract with Langley takes three seats on school board

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Dan Ferguson

About the Author: Dan Ferguson

Best recognized for my resemblance to St. Nick, I’m the guy you’ll often see out at community events and happenings around town.
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