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Stanwood Mayor Elizabeth Callaghan said it was a difficult decision to not file for re-election.

She said she already has a lot on her plate — teaching full-time, both in-person and online, and coaching basketball and golf at Grace Academy, a private Christian school in Marysville.

“The main reason that I did not file for mayor, it really requires more time than I’m able to give it right now,” she said. “I still give it as much as I can. It’s been a real learning experience and an honor.”

Stanwood City Council member Sid Roberts was the only person to file to run for mayor. Callaghan was appointed to the position last summer after longtime Mayor Leonard Kelley resigned for health reasons.

Between planning commission, city council and mayor, Callaghan’s been serving the city for nearly a decade and has learned a lot about how the city works. It’s kept her busy, and she said she's looking forward to slowing down a little.

“I’ve accomplished almost everything I’ve set out to do,” she said.

Callaghan lists her accomplishments during a short time at the city’s helm: Getting the ball rolling on a feasibility study that could lead to creation of a parks and recreation department, getting new Christmas decorations for city streets and gaining transparency and public involvement in the city process, which has been a challenge due to COVID-19 restrictions and online meetings. She also put forth the possibility of revisiting the location of the City Hall and police station, and the council approved a second look at downtown possibilities.

“Just seeing progress on City Hall … has encouraged us to look at our options to focus in the downtown and choose the most financially responsible option,” she said.

Callaghan will join other Stanwood mayors in the history book, notably as the youngest and the second woman to hold the office.

“It’s pretty exciting for a history teacher,” she said.

Other local races draw challengers

All four Stanwood City Council seats on the ballot this year have garnered two candidates each: 

  • Position 1: Incumbent council member Rob Johnson is being challenged by Dani Gaumond.
  • Position 2: Stanwood Planning Commissioner Marcus Metz and Andreena Bergman will go head-to-head to replace council member Dianne White, who isn’t seeking re-election.
  • Position 3: Incumbent council member Darren Robb is facing former council member Larry Sather.
  • Position 7: Incumbent council member Judy Williams will face Tim Schmitt.

In the Stanwood-Camano School Board race, the two incumbents — Albert Schreiber and Charlotte Murry — have attracted challengers:

  • District 1: Schreiber faces Gary Forslund, a reverend at New View Church, and Kevin Williams.
  • District 2: Murry will face Tracy Abuhl, a precinct captain for the Island County Republican Party, and Samantha Smith.

However, in the Camano Island races, each open position has just one interested candidate:

  • Camano Island Fire & Rescue commissioner, Pos. 1: Kim E. Williams
  • Camano Island Fire & Rescue commissioner, Pos. 3: “Kelly” William Yadon
  • Camano Island Fire & Rescue commissioner, Pos. 5: Janice Treml
  • Port of Mabana commissioner, Pos. 3: Lincoln Libby

And a late challenger emerged in the race for Snohomish County Council, District 1, to represent north county, including the Stanwood area. Incumbent Nate Nehring, a Republican, will face Richard Yust, a Democrat.

In Island County, Bernie Upchurch, a Republican who was appointed as county assessor earlier this month, was the only person to file for the position.

Any race with three or more candidates will go to a primary election set for Aug. 3. The two leading candidates will then advance to the Nov. 2 general election.

See a full list of candidate filings on the State Elections web page.

— Reporter Brandon Stone:, 360-416-2112, Twitter: @Brandon_SVH

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