Steve Anthony is returning to local government.
Anthony, who was the City of Coeur d'Alene's recreation director for 39 years and the parks and recreation director for a year and a half before retiring in January 2016, won a six-way race for Post Falls City Council Seat 4 on Tuesday.
The current seat holder, Betty Ann Henderson, decided to not seek re-election.
Anthony had 455 votes, edging Bobby Wilhelm's 448. Others included: James Steffensen, 143; Bob Flowers, 140; Joe Bodman, 128; and Richard Whitehead 117.
The race was the only one of nine city council and mayoral races that was contested in the county's three largest cities of Coeur d'Alene, Post Falls and Hayden.
Anthony said he was feeling confident of his chances of winning on Tuesday, but also realized anything could happen.
"We worked hard as a family on the campaign," he said. "I also had some of my friends help. I walked a lot of neighborhoods. I also believed my experience working in local government would be a factor.”
Anthony said he tried to emphasize his stance on expanding public trails and open greenspace. During his campaign, he learned citizens have zoning concerns and concerns about growth.
"I will do my homework and make sure I'm informed on any issues that come to the City Council," he said. "I am open-minded and fair."
Wilhelm is a real estate agent and an owner of the Bob's 21 Club bar.
"I figured I'd have home-court advantage (for being a long-time Post Falls resident), but I didn't know I'd be running until the first week of September," said Wilhelm, who is a second cousin to current council member Linda Wilhelm.
Wilhelm said he tried to appeal to the long-time residents and others who have concerns about Post Falls' rapid growth and the city's projections that the population could jump from about 34,000 to around 90,000 in 20 years.
Wilhelm nearly went from felon to city council member.
He served 16 years in prison for dealing drugs and assault on a police officer during a vehicle chase. He was released in June 2006, then was on parole for eight years.
Wilhelm said he was asked a few times during his campaign if felons can run for office.
"I have full rights as soon as I'm off probation and parole," he said, adding that he's been off parole for three years.
Wilhelm's earlier years and his turnaround are chronicled in the book "Bobby Convict."
"I'm not that same person anymore," he said, referring to his earlier years.
In the races for Rathdrum City Council, the incumbents prevailed.
Darrell Rickard's 157 votes outdistanced challengers Kandi Johnson (48) and Penelope Weitz (128) for Seat 1. Paula Laws had 201 votes to 130 for challenger Mike Hill for Seat 3.
Rickard, who was appointed to the council a year ago and served for six years on the planning and zoning commission, said he thinks growth was on most citizens' minds during the campaign.
"I believe the biggest factor for the voters is the concern over the growth," he said. "Some welcome growth, others want their small town.
"I would love to keep the small-town feel but with North Idaho College, KTEC and one of the best school districts in the area, we will grow. I see my job as making sure we grow responsibly, and that we do whatever is necessary to try and keep a beautiful, clean and safe town."
Laws served on the planning and zoning commission for six years.
"As a current councilor, I believe that I have done a good job of being fiscally responsible," she said.
Here is the unofficial vote count for the contested city council and mayoral races in Kootenai County.
ATHOL CITY COUNCIL SEAT #3
Mary J. Zichko: 51
Andrew Bruse: 26
FERNAN LAKE VLG COUNCIL SEAT #1
Raymond J. Watkins: 24
Eugene A. Marano: 25
Kayleen Walker: 44
Wanda S. Irish: 36
POST FALLS CITY COUNCIL SEAT #4
Steve Anthony: 455
Joe Bodman: 128
Bob Flowers: 140
James Steffensen: 143
Richard Whitehead: 117
Bobby Wilhelm: 448
RATHDRUM CITY COUNCIL SEAT #1
Kandi Johnson: 48
Darrell A. Rickard: 157
Penelope P. Weitz: 128
RATHDRUM CITY COUNCIL SEAT #3
Mike Hill: 130
Paula J. Laws: 201
SPIRIT LAKE MAYOR
Todd Clary: 122
Renee Eastman: 191
SPIRIT LAKE CITY COUNCIL 2YR
William J. Millsaps: 109
Joy H. Porter: 138
Kim Trask: 42
Here is the unofficial vote count for the uncontested city council and mayoral races in Kootenai County.
ATHOL CITY COUNCIL SEAT #4
Shane D. McDaniel: 67
COEUR D’ALENE MAYOR
Steve Widmyer: 1,379
COEUR D’ALENE CITY COUNCIL SEAT #2
Amy Evans: 1,354
COEUR D’ALENE CITY COUNCIL SEAT #4
Woody McEvers: 1,307
COEUR D’ALENE CITY COUNCIL SEAT #6
Kiki J. Miller: 1,331
DALTON GARDENS CITY COUNCIL
(Vote for 2)
Joe Myers: 110
Denise Lundy: 112
FERNAN LAKE VLG COUNCIL SEAT #4
Doris K. Hoffman: 42
HARRISON CITY COUNCIL 4YR
Debbie Lockhart: 55
Jessica N. Hutson: 46
Claire Hatfield: 24
HAUSER CITY COUNCIL 2YR
Laurie Griffith: 24
HAUSER CITY COUNCIL 4YR
Kiera Beck: 25
HAYDEN CITY COUNCIL SEAT #2
Richard (Dick) Panabaker: 282
HAYDEN CITY COUNCIL SEAT #4
Jeri J. DeLange: 279
HAYDEN LAKE CITY COUNCIL SEAT #2
Daniel Baker: 35
HAYDEN LAKE CITY COUNCIL SEAT #4
Jim Ackerman: 37
HUETTER CITY COUNCIL 4YR
LaTasha Sumner: 2
John Whitaker: 2
POST FALLS MAYOR
Ronald G. Jacobson: 1,252
POST FALLS CITY COUNCIL SEAT #2
Alan Wolfe: 1,200
POST FALLS CITY COUNCIL SEAT #6
Linda Wilhelm: 1,198
SPIRIT LAKE CITY COUNCIL 4YR
Autumn Massender: 216
Chris Robinson: 201
STATE LINE MAYOR
STATE LINE CITY COUNCIL
WORLEY CITY COUNCIL
Keith Gilbert: 12
Richard J. Wienclaw: 6