Sheila A. Olem Wins Mayoral Race in Herndon

Sheila A. Olem Wins Mayoral Race in Herndon

Herndon Town Council 2021-22 boasts diversity

Town of Herndon Mayor-Elect Sheila Olem.

Town of Herndon Mayor-Elect Sheila Olem. Photo contributed

Sheila A. Olem will be sworn in as the new mayor of the Town of Herndon 2021-22. Although the Virginia Department of Elections will not certify the final numbers until Nov. 16, Olem, the current Vice Mayor, defeated Roland B. Taylor. Olem received 5,138 votes, with Taylor receiving 3,152. As of Nov. 5, there were 13,360 registered voters in the Town of Herndon, and 12,865 are active voters, according to Brian Worthy at Fairfax County Office of Public Affairs.

Taylor's candidacy stressed it was time for a change with "common-sense solutions, results not partisan rhetoric." Olem's candidacy prioritized continuing leadership as an environmentally focused town and bringing home county, state and other regional dollars. "It is a privilege and honor to have served the town for the past ten years, and I look forward to the challenge of serving as the Mayor of Herndon," Olem said.

Early election results Nov. 3 showed Taylor in a decided lead. While the actual vote totals never changed, the results published were unofficial. Worthy said, "While we always strive for accuracy when we publish these unofficial results, county elections staff will make adjustments throughout the night as needed to correct any inaccuracies as occurred with the unofficial numbers for the Town of Herndon races. The unofficial results report may have been updated around 11 p.m., but updates can be made at any point during the night...This was nothing more than human error in our unofficial report...We have staff who double-check our data entry of the unofficial results, and they noticed that it was done incorrectly."

The six Town Councilmember-elects and their respective votes are: Cesar A. del Aguila 4,892; Pradip Dhakal 4,839; Sean M. Regan 4,713; Naila Alam 4,410; Signe V. Friedrichs 4,393 and Jasbinder Singh 4,386. They defeated challengers Clark A. Hedrick with 3,911 votes and Steve M. Porter with 3,818 votes. "I want to thank everyone for voting in our town election. It was amazing to see the level of participation this cycle. I am also very excited to see the range of diversity on council this session. Voters truly have chosen more inclusive representation for our town. I am humbled and thankful to serve our wonderful citizens once again,” said del Aguila.

Returning for his third, non-consecutive, two-year term, Jasbinder Singh said, "Needless to say, I'm very pleased with another opportunity the people have given me to continue to make this town a better place for all our citizens in every possible way."

Traditionally, the councilmember who receives the highest number of votes during the general town elections is named to the post of Vice Mayor. That should be del Aguila if tradition stands. Olem and the 2021-22 Herndon Town Councilmembers will begin their two-year terms on Jan. 1, 2021.