Council incumbents re-elected; Cocuzzi top vote-getter

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Westerville City Council’s four incumbent candidates held their seats in the Nov. 5 election.

Kathy Cocuzzi, Jenifer French, Mike Heyeck and Larry Jenkins beat out challenger Doug Rankin.

Kathy Cocuzzi was the top vote-getter, according to unofficial results from the Franklin and Delaware county boards of election Tuesday night, Nov. 5.

With all precincts reporting, Cocuzzi earned 5,440 votes or 24 percent. She was followed by Heyeck, who earned 5,092 votes, or 22.5 percent; French, who earned 4,960 votes, or 21.9 percent; and Jenkins, who earned 4,151 votes, or 18.3 percent.

Rankin earned 3,005 votes, or 13.3 percent.

“With any election, you just never know, and I’m very excited and honored that the people of Westerville have chosen me to represent them for the next four years,” Cocuzzi said.

Cocuzzi, 61, will commence her third term on council. For the past four years, she has served as mayor, a position she was appointed to by her fellow council members.

Cocuzzi said she looks forward to continuing her work on council.

“The voters are telling us that they’re liking the job we’re doing, so we’re just going to keep working hard to make Westerville better than it already is,” she said.

Heyeck, 59, has served on Westerville City Council for 20 years.

“I’m honored to serve another four years,” Heyeck said.

French, 39, was appointed to council in 2009.

French said she was excited to win her first election and looking forward to tackling more of the issues council will face in the coming year.

“I am really excited and really humbled and really happy the voters gave me the opportunity to serve them for another four years,” French said. “I’m looking forward to working as a team to implement the Uptown plan and work on economic development.”

Jenkins, 41, has served two terms on city council, and he said he once again was glad to earn a vote of confidence from Westerville residents.

“I love this community, and I’m happy to serve them again. I’m proud to be re-elected, to serve another term and continue what we’ve been doing. For me, it’s very gratifying that the time and effort we’ve invested has been rewarded,” Jenkins said. “I'm very thrilled.”

Council has many major issues before it, such as the implementation of the Uptown plan, the development of a new citywide plan, the adoption of a parks plan and the development of the recently purchased Altair property, and Jenkins said he looks forward to be a part of all of those initiatives.

“There are a lot of dominoes left to fall, so I’m excited to be part of the planning process,” Jenkins said.

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