Newton takes mayor’s office in Rockville -- Gazette.Net


Councilwoman Bridget Donnell Newton is set to be Rockville’s next mayor, the city has announced.

Newton defeated Councilman Mark Pierzchala with 53 percent of the vote, according to unofficial results from the city.

Pierzchala was running on a slate billed as Team Rockville. All four of the slate members seeking council seats were elected: Beryl L. Feinberg, Councilman Tom Moore, Virginia Onley and Julie Palakovich Carr.

At a party with supporters Tuesday night, Newton emphasized her desire to work with the newly elected council members, despite campaigning against the slate for the past several months.

“This is an opportunity to show that we can work with everyone, that we can make this a great city,” she said. “And I will go back to my mantra from the beginning (of the campaign), that together we can do great things.”

Pierzchala told The Gazette on Tuesday night that despite missing out on the mayor’s seat, he was happy that the other members of his slate got in.

“It was always going to be a tight race,” he said. “Nobody could call it ahead of time.”

The top vote-getter in the council race was Palakovich Carr, who received more than 18 percent of the vote. She was followed by Onley, Moore and Feinberg.

Donald H. Hadley and Claire Marcuccio Whitaker fell short of the votes needed to secure seats on the council.

According to a city news release, 6,685 ballots were cast in this year’s election, which is 16.6 percent of the 40,226 registered voters in Rockville.

The ballot also included three advisory referendums to gauge voters’ opinions on possible changes to the city’s charter. Voters could answer yes, no or no opinion.

According to the unofficial results, about 53 percent of those who voted would favor increasing the Mayor and Council’s term of office from two years to four. About 53 percent would oppose moving city elections to the same year as presidential elections, and just over 50 percent would oppose adding two council seats.

Full election results are available on the city’s website, The results are unofficial until Nov. 12.

The inauguration of the new Mayor and Council is set for 1 p.m. Nov. 17 at the F. Scott Fitzgerald Theatre, 603 Edmonston Drive.