Marie Blankley (center) is joined by her supporters during an election night gathering at her home. Submitted photo

Marie Blankley has taken a resounding lead in the Gilroy mayoral race with more than half of the votes counted.

As of 10am Nov. 4, Blankley received 9,498 votes, or 68.52 percent of the total counted. Her opponent Reid Lerner garnered 4,363 votes.

Gilroy’s next mayor will take over from Roland Velasco, who announced in January that he would not be seeking reelection.

“I am deeply humbled and appreciative of everyone who has supported me,” Blankley said. “I’m empowered by the confidence the voters place in me. I want the best for Gilroy, my hometown, and will work everyday to do what I think is best for our city.”

Blankley was first appointed to the Gilroy City Council to fill an open seat in 2018, and later that year was elected to a four-year term. She served as mayor pro tempore in 2019.

She previously served on the city’s planning commission from 1992-99, as well as the Chamber of Commerce board and other community organizations.

Blankley, a Certified Public Accountant, opened her practice in Gilroy in 1996.

Blankley’s apparent victory will leave her council seat vacant with two years remaining on its term. The council in December will decide whether to fill the seat by appointment or through a special election.

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Erik Chalhoub joined Weeklys as an editor in 2019. Prior to his current position, Chalhoub worked at The Pajaronian in Watsonville for seven years, serving as managing editor from 2014-2019.


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