Atwell, Chapman win Sarasota runoff election

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SARASOTA - Voters in the city of Sarasota headed to the polls Tuesday to select two candidates to fill city commission seats.

After no clear winner could be determined at the general election in March, a runoff race is between Suzanne Atwell, Susan Chapman and Richard Dorfman was held Tuesday.

And Sarasota's two open commission seats will be filled by incumbent Suzanne Atwell and newcomer Susan Chapman.

"I feel really good as I move forward in this city," said Atwell.  "We have a lot of opportunities to move forward with the Rosemary District, the North Trail and Downtown. We are looking at the city as a whole. We are looking how to make the code more predictable. There are all sorts of things we are going to start working on now."

"I am grateful for the voters who voted me in," said Chapman.  "We need to tackle the noise issue and the vagrancy issue. We certainly have fiscal issues looming over us that we have to tackle."

Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections Kathy Dent says the runoff generated more excitement and enthusiasm than she has seen before.  Tuesday's election attracted a larger turnout for the runoff than there was for the primary election, which Dent says is nearly unheard of.

Tuesday night, Dorfman did not seem discouraged by the results.  "This is not the end. Once you get involved you don't just walk away. You keep going and fighting for the things you believe in."

Atwell and Chapman will be sworn in on Friday.  The new City Commission will then select a Mayor and Vice Mayor to serve for the next year.

Final numbers, 18 of 18 Precincts Reporting:


City of Sarasota Commissioners (2)    
Suzanne Atwell 64.42% 4,575
Susan Chapman 54.63% 3,880
Richard Dorfman



Note: Each ballot could have a maximum of two votes.  Percentages listed indicate the percentage of all votes received for each of the candidates.