Angelia Pelham will serve as Frisco’s newest City Council member, according to unofficial election numbers
Unofficial election totals from Collin and Denton counties show that Pelham gained 53% (7,045) of over 13,000 votes for a runoff race to determine who will fill the Place 3 spot on the City Council. Opponent Jennifer White garnered 47% or 6,244 of the votes.
At around 10:30 p.m. Saturday, Pelham said she thought she was still in a state of shock.
“We expected this to be a close race,” she said Saturday. “We didn’t know exactly what the numbers were going to come out to be.”
Some members of her team had been optimistic as runoff election day came around, Pelham said, and others were a little concerned. Pelham herself said she was somewhere in the middle—optimistic and prayerful, but unsure of what the numbers would look like. A little before 10 p.m., everyone had their answer.
“I think Frisco spoke,” Pelham said Saturday night. “Frisco said some things with this vote. Not only with the number of people that came out but ultimately how the numbers fell out.”
Early voting numbers from Collin and Denton counties had shown a tight lead for Pelham, who at that point was ahead of White by just 14 votes.
Pelham said she felt a lot of variables had tipped the scales in her favor, including staying true to her message and the support she saw from city leaders like Frisco Mayor Jeff Cheney and Frisco City Councilman John Keating.
“I think it was just a compilation of things that came together, and hopefully it resonated with the Frisco residents,” Pelham said, “and they came out and they spoke. They said they wanted to maintain a quality culture, they said that they wanted to maintain economic viability and they said that they want unity, and I think all of that is what the residents of Frisco said when they came out to vote today and during early voting.”
In a Saturday night Facebook post, White’s campaign page posted a statement regarding the results.
“The results were not what we hoped for, and while I am very disappointed, I want to thank so many people who helped me and supported my campaign and prayed for me,” White stated.
“Congratulations to Angelia Pelham and I wish her well in serving the city we both love,” White stated. “I will continue to stay involved and care very deeply about Frisco. I hope that all of the people who got energized during this race will also stay engaged and continue to make a difference.”
The final results come after a heated runoff campaign season as White and Pelham looked to secure their spot on the seat. Pelham said looking ahead, the city has to move forward together.
“My goal is to be that olive branch and hopefully pull us together, because we can’t get anywhere as a city divided,” she said. “We have to come together, and I’m willing to put myself in the middle to say ‘Enough of this. Enough of the partisan division and polarisation, we have to find common ground for the best interests of the city,’ and that’s what I want for this city.”
On a Saturday night Facebook post, Cheney said he looked forward to serving with Pelham. He also thanked the candidates who had initially put their names in the hat for the spot, including White, Karen Cunningham and Sai Krishna.
“Contested elections are always hard and filled with passion but Frisco has always come together after elections to move forward with the great work in front of us,” Cheney stated.
Pelham replaces outgoing City Councilman Will Sowell.
“I’m just excited and I’m thankful that Frisco spoke,” Pelham said, “and my goal is to represent all of Frisco, for people who voted for me and those who didn’t, I am their councilperson, and I will represent all of Frisco to the best of my ability.”
This story has been updated to include comments from Angelia Pelham, Jennifer White and Jeff Cheney.