Incumbent success was the theme for the Danville Town Council and San Ramon Valley school board races, according to unofficial election results released just after midnight Wednesday by Contra Costa County election officials.
Danville Councilwoman Karen Stepper ended the night in first place with 38.95% of the vote, poised to earn a fourth term. Robert Storer, the town's current mayor, finished close behind in second with 38.36% in his bid for a second full term.
Two council seats were up for grabs this fall, and lone challenger Tony Adamich, a downtown Danville shop owner, garnered 22.11% of the vote.
The perfect record for Danville incumbents appears to have continued, in light of the unofficial results -- no sitting Town Council member has ever lost a re-election bid since Danville incorporated in 1982.
In the race for three San Ramon Valley school board seats, Rachel Hurd led the way with 28.79% of the vote, followed by fellow incumbent Denise Jennison, who garnered 26.53%.
The final seat could be too close to call. Ken Mintz, the other current board member running, ended the night with 22.94% while the only challenger, attorney Jerome C. Pandell, finished with 21.22% -- 848 votes separated Mintz and Pandell, according to the unofficial election results.
In a tight State Assembly contest, Republican attorney Catharine Baker, of Dublin, posted a 3,349-vote advantage over Dublin Mayor and Democrat Tim Sbranti (51.9% to 48.1%) in the race to represent Danville, San Ramon and the rest of District 16.
The San Ramon Valley is poised to be represented by two Democratic congressmen for the next two years.
U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Dublin), whose district includes San Ramon, secured his second straight term by defeating Hugh Bussell (R-Livermore), with the margin standing at 69% to 31%.
The San Ramon Valley's state senator, Mark DeSaulnier, looks to be headed to Washington, D.C., after finishing Election Night well ahead in the race to represent Danville and the rest of the 11th Congressional District. DeSaulnier (D-Concord) had 66.2% of the vote, compared to the 33.8% earned by his opponent, retired Judge Tue Phan (R-Danville).
In other local races, challengers Donald R. Parker (29.21%) and Chris Campbell (25.93%) are on pace to claim the two open seats on the San Ramon Valley Fire Protection District Board of Directors. Challenger Dale A. Price (22.46%) and incumbent Glenn Umont (22.16%) sat third and fourth, respectively.
Challenger Mike Maxwell appears on his way to becoming the new representative for the Contra Costa County Board of Education, Trustee Area 4 (which includes San Ramon, Danville and parts of Alamo). Maxwell earned 52.81% of the vote while incumbent Richard Asadoorian had 46.72% -- a margin of 1,712 votes -- according to the unofficial election results.
The county education board's Trustee Area 2 (which includes parts of Alamo) race saw incumbent Christine Deane (55.38%) finish ahead of challenger Ray Andersen (44.2%).
For more details about the unofficial Election Night results from Contra Costa County, visit the county election website.
The unofficial election results include early vote-by-mail tallies and totals reported by 100% of the precincts on Election Night.
The election results will likely change as final vote-by-mail ballots, provisional ballots and other ballots are processed, according to the California Secretary of State. Depending on the volume of these types of ballots, it may take up to 28 days for county elections officials to verify voter records and determine if ballots have been cast by eligible voters.
County elections officials must report their final results to the Secretary of State by Dec. 5.
Editor's note: A previous version of this story listed an incorrect margin between third and fourth place in the San Ramon Valley school board race. DanvilleSanRamon.com regrets the error.