McCullough wins tightly contested fire board race

Candy McCullough has won the closely contested race for Position 4 on Vashon’s fire board by 66 votes.

Though initial results released this month showed challenger Joe Ulatoski in the lead, later returns were weighted toward McCullough, giving her a lead that she maintained as additional ballots trickled in.

King County certified the election Tuesday morning, and final results showed McCullough ahead with 2,127 votes, or 50.62 percent of the vote. Ulatoski had 49.05 percent with 2,061 votes.

On Monday McCullough, a Boeing firefighter, said she was pleased it looked as though she had retained her spot on the board, which she was appointed to in June.

“I feel like the voters have basically supported me in continuing to do the work I’ve been doing,” she said.

Though both candidates put forth lively campaigns this fall, McCullough said she was glad the contest stayed civil.

“I appreciated the mutual respect that he and I had for each other,” she said.

Last week after McCullough had held her lead for several days, Ulatoski said he called “and congratulated her on her victory.”

“I told her if there was anything I could do to help (Vashon Island Fire & Rescue) continue in its pursuit of excellence, just let me know,” he said.

Ulatoski said he enjoyed the race, adding, “Now I’ll start looking for other windmills to joust at.”

McCullough said she expected to collaborate with Ulatoski in the future in his role as a VashonBePrepared volunteer.

“I look forward to working with Joe in an ongoing way with the emergency preparedness group,” she said.

Incumbent Ron Turner won the race for Position 1 on the board early on, garnering about 54 percent of the vote. Challenger Deborah Brown had about 45 percent of the vote.

More than 7,800 ballots were sent to Vashon voters, and about 4,750 were returned, a 61 percent return.

About 4,200 Islanders voted in the race between McCullough and Ulatoski, a 54 percent return.


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