Results are in for a flurry of elections across the NWT that took place on Monday, with many hamlets getting new councillors and a few electing new mayors.
Enterprise, Tulita, Fort McPherson, and Ulukhaktok each had mayoral positions up for grabs, with a total of ten people putting their names forward for the spots.
Richard Nerysoo is the new mayor of Fort McPherson, nabbing 130 of the 254 votes cast. He beat out competitors Shaylene Blake and Krista Jerome by significant margins – 79 votes and 40 votes, respectively.
Nerysoo was previously president of the Gwich’in Tribal Council and served 16 years in the Legislative Assembly, including a term as premier.
“Thank you to voters in Fort McPherson for your support,” Nerysoo wrote on Facebook following the election results.
“I am so grateful, encouraged, and honoured by the support given to me.”
Fort McPherson’s incumbent mayor William R Koe is stepping down from the role but has kept a position on council, alongside Joyce Blake and mayoral candidate Shaylene Blake.
Only Robert Greenland, elected Monday, is new to Fort McPherson’s council.
There were five ballots spoiled for mayor and four ballots spoiled for council.
Meanwhile, Douglas Yallee has won the position of mayor in Tulita, beating Wilfred Lennie with 96 votes to 68.
Yallee has served on council since 2018 and previously ran for the position in 2017 but was defeated by then-incumbent mayor Frank Andrew.
Joining Yallee on the Tulita council is William Andrew, Angela Bernarde, Archie Erigaktuk, Candice Fraser, Carl Jr Kodakin-Yakeleya, Sally Ann Horassi, Robert McPherson, James Mendo.
In Enterprise, Malcolm MacPhail beat councillor Barbara Hart for mayor by only two votes.
Enterprise had one of the higher voter turnout rates – 67 percent – of the municipal elections, with 44 of 63 eligible voters in the community casting a ballot.
This compares to a 57 percent turnout rate in Fort McPherson, 47 percent in Tulita, 34 percent in Fort Resolution, and 21 percent in Aklavik.
Darren Sopel, Allan Flamand, and Barbara Hartwere elected to council in Enterprise, with Craig McMaster losing his seat despite running for re-election.
Joshua Oliktoak clinched mayorship over Joe Nilgak in Ulukhaktok, receiving 68 votes to Nilgak’s 37 and one spoiled ballot.
In Sachs Harbour, mayor Norman Anikina was acclaimed for another two-year term.
Three councillor candidates in the hamlet were also acclaimed, as well as councillors in Tuktoyaktuk and Paulatuk.
In other council elections Cindy Villeneuve, Thomas Unka, and Angela MacKay were elected in Fort Resolution, while Jordan McLeod, Michael McLeod, Richard Storr Sr., and Dorothy Erigaktoak snagged seats in Aklavik.
All results for the December 14 elections are available on the GNWT’s Municipal and Community Affairs’ website.