Jody Reichel will be the next Sandy Springs City Council representative for District 4, according to unofficial election results that showed her defeating Le’Dor Milteer.
Reichel drew 920 votes, or about 65 percent of the total, to Milteer’s 505 votes, according to the Georgia Secretary of State’s office.
“I want to express my heartfelt thanks to the citizens of the Fourth District for electing me to the Sandy Springs City Council,” Reichel said. “I am honored that you have put your trust in me, and I promise to work diligently to serve the best interest of our community.”
Milteer offered thanks to her supports and congratulations to Reichel. “I was the underdog coming into this race, and I learned a lot,” Milteer said. “Although I am disappointed about the outcome, my commitment to Sandy Springs has not wavered. I will continue to be an active member of this community.”
Reichel is a real estate investor and landlord who ran an entirely self-funded campaign. She will replace Gabriel Sterling, who did not run for re-election and instead campaigned for Fulton County chair.
Milteer out-raised and outspent Reichel, according to campaign finance reports, but that did not translate into a majority of votes. While the race was nonpartisan, an endorsement revealed that Milteer is a Democrat, while Reichel describes herself as a moderate Republican.
Reichel will be the council’s lone woman member. There is one other newcomer on the council – Steve Soteres, who will replace Ken Dishman in District 2. Mayor Rusty Paul and incumbent Councilmembers Andy Bauman, Chris Burnett, Tibby DeJulio and John Paulson were automatically re-elected when no one challenged them.
Reichel may take office sooner than the beginning of the new council term in January. Sterling remains in office while making his Fulton County chair campaign, but previously said he might resign after Election Day. That would allow the incumbent City Council to appoint his elected successor to fill out the final weeks of his term and ensure elected continuity. The City Council held a meeting on Election Night, before the polls closed, and as Sterling left early to attend his party for what may be his last time as a city councilmember, the audience burst into applause.