Oro Valley voters sent a message May 18: out with the old and in with the new, electing five new council members.

Barry Gillaspie, Helen Dankwerth and Terry Parish won the three four-year council seats; two-year candidates Conny Culver and Kenneth "K.C." Carter ousted incumbents Bart Rochman and Dick Johnson.

"I'm really honored that the people of Oro Valley decided to place their confidence in me and the other candidates," said a stunned and happy Gillaspie. "It was a hard fought race and I'm looking forward to a bright future for Oro Valley."

"All of us will work as a team," Dankwerth said. "With the citizens, there's no end to what we can accomplish."

In the four-year race, Gillaspie and Dankwerth each had 19.9 percent of the vote and Parish had 17.7.

Richy Feinberg was fourth with 15.5 percent of the vote; Lyra Done and Don Cox came in last with 13.5 percent each.

Parish, who ran on a public safety platform, thanked firefighters and police for their support and the citizens who volunteered on his behalf.

OVCandidates2004, an independent political committee, supported the other four winners, who ran on a controlled growth slate.

In the two-year race, Culver and Carter had 27.6 and 27.2 percent of the vote to Johnson and Rochman's 22.6 percent each. Neither Johnson nor Rochman could be reached for comment.

"This was a grassroots effort, it shows the people of Oro Valley are ready for a change," Culver said, as champagne corks popped. "We're just the folks to do it."

K.C. Carter attributed his success to walking the precincts. "I just started at Sun City and went clear down to Magee. I lost 10 pounds doing it too," he said.

About 30 percent of the town's voters cast a ballot. Results are unofficial.

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