On Tuesday, John Tecklenburg was elected Charleston’s next mayor. Tecklenburg trumped opponent Leon Stravrinakis in the runoff election with 57.5 percent of votes to Stravrinakis’ 42.5 percent. The once small lead over S.C. House of Representatives member, Stravrinakis, expanded dramatically over the two weeks between elections.
Tecklenburg’s campaign focused on the well-being of the city and its residents. The businessman highlighted the importance of efficient transportation around the peninsula and control over the tourism industry. His campaign centered on a push for improving quality of life in Charleston.
Tecklenburg’s support of the Ashley River bike lane had College of Charleston students rejoicing.“We can finally bike to West Ashley!” exclaimed sophomore Kristen Kornbluth.
Other students, like senior Carson Schafer, voted for Tecklenburg only after a shift in plans. “In the first election I voted for Ginny Deerin, [because of] her commitment to education,” Schafer said.
The Nov. 3 election left Deerin as a third place and unlikely winner. Deerin threw her support to Tecklenburg after her chances were painted slim.
Schafer switched gears into voting for Tecklenburg in the runoff due to his talk of “making Charleston better for residents rather than tourists.”
Stravrinakis and his supporters congratulated Tecklenburg on becoming Charleston’s next new mayor. All candidates agreed that Charleston was losing a great leader in Mayor Riley; however, Tecklenburg made it clear he was ready to get down to business even before he officially takes office in January.