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Write-in candidates fall short as Kimmons, Hoag, Mitros win Flossmoor trustee seats

The race for two Flossmoor village board seats turned out much closer than anyone would have predicted three months ago.
When the final votes were announced April 23, however, two incumbent trustees – Perry Hoag and James Mitros – defeated their write-in challengers, Michelle Nelson and David Bruni.
Hoag and Mitros were elected to their seventh four-year terms as trustees and will join newcomer Gyata Kimmons on the board. Kimmons was the top vote-getter in the April 2 village board contest, which meant he won his trustee seat regardless of how many write-in votes were cast.
No write-in votes were tallied on the night of the election and the Cook County Clerk’s office announced that the official results would not be known until the official canvass three weeks after ballots were cast.
According to the final results, Kimmons got 1,485 votes, Hoag received 1,142 votes and Mitros came in third with 954. Nelson got 903 write-in votes and Bruni received 753.
The canvass came nearly three months to the day after Bruni was officially removed from the ballot by Flossmoor’s village election board, which upheld two of the five objections to his petitions by Hoag and Mitros. The board, which has the authority to enforce state election laws on the local level, ruled that Bruni had not properly numbered or bound his petitions. 
Bruni was officially removed from the ballot by the election board on Jan. 22. After that, Bruni and Nelson said they would run together as write-in candidates for two village board seats.
Hoag, Bruni and Nelson released statements after the official results were announced.
“I’m gratified to be elected to another term as village trustee. I’m looking forward to working with our new trustee, Gyata Kimmons,” Hoag said. “I would also like to extend my congratulations to the challengers Michelle Nelson and David Bruni for their inspired and spirited campaign.”
Bruni called the campaign “a ride I will never forget.”
“I’ve learned so much about our community and our wonderful citizens,” he said. “I’ve been privileged to meet and speak with so many people I didn’t know before and for that I’m extremely grateful. I have zero regrets and I’m glad I did it. 
 “I ran as a write-in candidate to provide a choice for our village trustee seats, but more importantly, so that opportunities and progressive ideas could be discussed openly with a sense of urgency. I’m certain we accomplished that.”
He thanked his family, Nelson and their supporters and congratulated Kimmons, Hoag and Mitros.
Nelson called her and Bruni’s effort “one of the strongest write-in campaigns that Flossmoor and Cook County has ever seen.”
“I jumped into this race because Flossmoor voters deserve a choice as to who they want to represent them,” she said. “All of you, and the record number of votes you helped us generate, demonstrated that Flossmoor is changing and needs new ideas.”
She thanked Bruni and congratulated the winning candidates and said she is grateful to scores of volunteers who helped put together a strong grass-roots campaign with yard signs, door hangers, meet and greet activities, election day support and an active social media presence.
Nelson said she plans to pursue the village board seat vacated by former trustee Phillip Minga, who resigned in February. The vacancy will be filled by Braun and the village board.

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