This story was corrected on May 8, 2014. An explanation follows the story.
Incumbents generally did well in the municipal elections around the region, but open seats also allowed some new faces to join city and town councils.
In a contentious race in the Town of Herndon, Mayor Lisa Merkel was re-elected for a second term over Vice Mayor Connie Hutchinson.
Jennifer Baker, an avid town volunteer who works in the IT field, received the most votes of the 11 candidates running for Town Council and will be the next vice mayor, per town tradition.
Merkel and some of the council candidates drew criticism from some town residents for endorsing one another’s candidacy, which some referred to running as a “slate,” as well as receiving funding from local Democratic elected officials. The town council is officially nonpartisan, with all candidates listed as independent on the ballot.
Local Republican groups also endorsed several candidates in the Herndon and Town of Vienna elections and tried to rally their base for support.
In Herndon, incumbents Grace Wolf and Sheila Olem were re-elected to the council. They were endorsed by the Democrats, along with Baker and Merkel. Dave Kirby, also an incumbent council member, was re-elected and was endorsed by Republicans.
Two candidates who weren’t backed by either party also won seats. Jasbinder Singh, who served on the council in the 2011-2012 term, was returned to the council.
Newcomer Steven Mitchell also secured a seat. Mitchell is a Town of Herndon native who campaigned on improving the town’s plans for redevelopment around the future Herndon Metro Station.
Charlie Waddell was the only sitting council member to not be re-elected. Councilwoman Melissa Jonas did not seek re-election, and Hutchinson could not run to keep her seat, as she was running for mayor.
In the City of Fairfax, Mayor Scott Silverthorne easily won re-election over challenger John Norce, a first-time candidate. Silverthorne, who was a councilman for many years before running for mayor, won 74 percent of the votes.
The four incumbent council members running were also re-elected: Michael DeMarco, Jeff Greenfield, David Meyer and Ellie Schmidt. Janice Miller and Nancy Loftus will join the council.
Councilmen Dan Drummond and Steve Stombres did not seek re-election.
The mayoral races in the Town of Vienna and the Town of Clifton had candidates running unopposed. William Holloway was re-elected as mayor of Clifton.
Laurie DiRocco, who was appointed mayor of Vienna earlier this year following the death of longtime Mayor Jane Seeman, was formally elected to the position.
Councilwoman Edythe Kelleher was the only incumbent seeking re-election in this cycle and received the most votes of any of the six candidates pursuing three seats. Vienna council terms are staggered and the town holds elections every year.
Linda Colbert and Pasha Majdi, the two Vienna candidates endorsed by the Republican Club of Greater Reston, were also elected to Vienna Town Council.
In Clifton, there were only four people on the ballot for five seats. However, the town has a small voting population and history of electing people via write-in.
Dwayne Nitz, the current vice mayor, received the most votes of the four candidates on the ballot, 59. followed by Eric Hencken and current council member Wayne Nickum. Jennifer Heilmann and Deborah Dillard were elected via write-in.
Dillard, a sitting council member, bested fellow council member Chuck Rusnak, who was listed on the ballot, by just two votes to take the fifth council seat, according to unofficial results.
Correction: The original version of this story mistakenly stated that some council candidates in Herndon received funding from the county Democratic Party.