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College board veteran defeated

OW Staff Writer | 11/7/2013, midnight

Low voter turn-out characterized local elections held Tuesday, and in Compton that may have helped contribute to the ouster of one long-time incumbent on the Compton Community College District Board of Trustees.

Board Trustee Lorraine Cervantes, a long-time community activist finished second in a three-way race. She collected 730 votes, while the winner, educator/entrepreneur Lowanda Green snagged 897 or 48.51 percent of ballots casts. The third place finisher Janet Melba Earl accounted for 12.01 percent (222) of votes cast.

When she was first elected, Cervantes represented Area 1, but with re-districting that took place on May 16, 2012 she was moved into Area 5, which is one of the areas representing the city of Compton.

In Trustee Area 2—which represents the communities of Willowbrook and West Rancho Dominguez—veteran politico Leslie A. Irving defeated D. Lynne Boone 796 (71.2 percent) to 322 (28.8 percent) votes. This term is a special election to fill a slot with a term that ends in December 2015.

Irving’s election to the college board means that she has served on all three of the city’s key governing bodies. In March 1998, she was appointed to the Compton Unified School District, where she served until 2001. At that time, she resigned to take a seat on the City Council. But the council election, in which she defeated Melanie Andrews was overturned by a judge.

In Area 3 of the college board, which generally represents the city of Lynwood, Sonia Lopez defeated Marvin Aceves 859 to 688 (55.53 to 44.47 percent). The board term also ends in December 2015.

Compton Community College is still under control of the state government and the school itself is being operated under the purview of El Camino College. The district itself is a separate entity, governed by a special trustee with input from the elected board of trustees.

In other Compton elections, the school district drew a list of 13 candidates vying for four seats, and the top vote-getters include three incumbents—Satra Zurita (1,948 votes), Mae Thomas (1,814); Margie Garrett (1,700)—and Charles Davis (1,590) a former College Board Trustee, and ex-Compton City Clerk.

In the Sativa Los Angeles County Water District which encompasses Compton, four contestants put a bid in for two seats, and the winners were dental office manager C.A. Casillas and incumbent Johnny Edward Johnson.

In this race, only 202 of the 2,475 register voters went to the poll, and the top two candidates pulled in 67 and 65 votes respectively.

In the election for the Lynwood Unified School District, teacher Alma-Delia Reteria (941) and Board Member Alfonso Morales (823) collected the most votes in a six-person race.

In the Lynwood City Council race, nine candidates competed for three seats and the winners are: Jose Luis Solache, a former member of the Lynwood Unified School District with 1,125 votes (19.03 percent); former City Treasurer Edwin Hernandez with 972 (16.44 percent) and incumbent Maria T. Santillan-Beas Santillian with 910 (15.4 percent).