Jensen grabs mayoral GOP primary win

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A quick election night had sitting District 2 Noblesville Common Councilor Chris Jensen leading throughout, ending in his Republican nomination for Noblesville mayor in November.

“I felt like the last several weeks that I could sense from the voters that they were ready for a fresh vision and a new chapter, and that was confirmed today,” Jensen told Current on election night.

It is likely Jensen will be the next mayor of Noblesville, as there are no Democratic challengers set for the Nov. 5 general election.

Of the four candidates running for mayor – which also included Mike Corbett, owner of Hamilton County Business Magazine, Julia Church Kozicki, a former school board member, and Vince Baker, the City of Noblesville’s urban forester – Jensen was the first the announce his candidacy back in June 2018, and by the end of election night, he earned 46.4 percent of the vote. Corbett earned 31.43 percent, Kozicki 19.34 percent and Baker 2.83 percent.

Jensen was elected to the Noblesville Common Council in 2015, taking office in 2016. This is the final year of his term.

“I’m going to be the same guy tomorrow that I was today, and I’m going to go kiss my kids and wife then go chat with residents and listen to them about what they want to see and then put a plan in place,” Jensen told Current. “We’re not going to sit here and fiddle diddle around until Jan. 1. We’re going to build our plan and implement it on day one. We’re going to lay out a bold vision, and we’re going to need people that are really willing to able to be a part of that, and that includes a great council, which I am so excited about.”

Several new faces are set to join the council in 2020, as Jensen’s District 2 seat was made available, and District 1 Councilor Roy Johnson is not seeking reelection.

In District 1, Mike Davis earned 56.1 percent of the vote, beating out Mark Hall and Terry Busby for the Republican nomination, who each earned 33.14 percent and 10.76 percent of the vote, respectively.

In District 2, Pete Schwartz beat Mark Skipper for the nomination, earning 58.21 percent of the vote.

In District 3, incumbent Rick Taylor was significantly edged out by newcomer Aaron Smith, who took 47.47 percent of the vote, leaving 28.35 percent of the vote for Taylor and 24.18 percent for fellow opponent Brenda Cook.

In the only contested Democratic race in Hamilton County, Jason Myers beat Gary Bartunek by a landslide with 75.68 percent of the vote for the District 5 Democratic nomination. Myers will face incumbent Greg O’Connor, a Republican, in November.

In District 6, Republican Megan Wiles and Democrat Jeremy Hawk did not face challengers on May 7, but will face each other in the November election.

All three of the city’s at-large councilors, Brian Ayer, Mark Boice and Darren Peterson won their primary, beating Republican Rocky Shanehsaz. Ayer earned 24.51 percent of the vote, Boice 28.04 percent, Peterson 27.7 percent and Shanehsaz 19.76 percent. The trio will face Democrat Paula Jo Gilliam in November.

Noblesville City Clerk Evelyn Lees, City Judge Matt Cook and District 4 Councilor Wil Hampton, all Republicans, also ran unopposed in their primary races and, so far, do not face Democratic challengers in November, along with Jensen, Davis, Schwartz and Smith.

The deadline for opposing parties to fill vacancies on the ballot is June 30.

With six months until the general election and nearly eight months to the start of a new term, Jensen said he plans to essentially continue the work he’s been doing since last year to connect with residents.

“I’ve been and continue to be open and accessible; I’m at Noble Coffee & Tea everyday, and I’ve given my number out on Facebook. I’m ready to be the mayor for everyone, all 63,000 people in this city, whether they voted for me or not,” he said. “They have a seat at the table, they’re a part of the table, they built the table and they’re paying for the table.”

To see a complete list of results for Current Publishing’s coverage area, including Carmel, Fishers and Westfield, visit youarecurrent.com.

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