KALAMAZOO, MI — Democrat Thomas Whitener has defeated incumbent Republican Mary Balkema in the race for the Kalamazoo County treasurer, according to complete unofficial election results.
Whitener, a real estate agent, received 70,258 votes, about 51.2%, and Balkema received 66,855 votes, about 48.8%.
The final unofficial results were reported late Wednesday evening, Nov. 4, after the Kalamazoo County Clerk’s office added absentee ballots from the city of Kalamazoo to the total vote count. That is when is where Whitener pulled ahead of Balkema, who had been leading in early returns Tuesday.
Whitener said he was thankful and excited to see the result, and is ready to enact positive change.
“I’m incredibly proud of my campaign staff, of our volunteers and all of the other candidates and campaigns that worked to make this a possibility,” he said. “We unseated a 13-year incumbent.”
Whitener said, as of Thursday morning, he had