Four incumbents held onto their seats in the Sandy Springs municipal election while two new faces will join the City Council in 2022, according to unofficial returns from the Nov. 2 election.

In City Council District 1, incumbent John Paulson won reelection with 1,847 votes (63.25%) to challenger Megan Harris with 1,073 votes (36.75%) in unofficial totals.

Just two candidates faced off in the District 2 council election to replace Steve Soteres, but it was the tightest race for Sandy Springs. Melody Kelley appeared to win and avoid a runoff with 984 votes (50.83%). Her lead against Linda Trickey was 32 votes, with Trickey collecting 952 votes (49.17%).

“I met so many wonderful people (and their dogs) across District 2 and I know my nonpartisan message was heard and appreciated by many of them,” Trickey said. “I lost by only 32 votes while running a positive campaign focused on the issues.”

Melissa Mular easily gained more votes than her two opponents in the District 3 race to fill the seat being vacated by Christ Burnett. Her 2,207 votes (50.72%) should be enough to avoid a runoff. Leslie Mullis had 1,475 votes (33.9%) and Eric Newberg had 669 votes (15.38%).

“Last night, we fell just shy of a runoff,” Mullis said in an email she shared with supporters and Reporter Newspapers. She wished Mular the best of luck in serving the community. “I look forward to holding our city council accountable in the coming years.”

Newberg said he was proud to have participated.

“Though hoping for different results, I deeply appreciate the support of the almost 700 Sandy Springs residents who entrusted me with their vote. The best part of running was getting to listen to and meet so many people who all want the best for our community,” he said.

Incumbent Jody Reichel easily outdistanced her three opponents in the District 4 contest with 1,136 votes (51.73%). Her closest challenger, Tochie Blad, had 454 votes (20.67%). Other candidates were Michelle Sullivan, 376 votes (17.12%) and Vern Graham, 230 votes (10.47%).

“I want to thank all the voters who trust me and have faith in reelecting me,” Reichel said, adding she is excited to continue her work keeping Sandy Springs a safe and vibrant city to live in.

“I believe there were too many candidates in the race this cycle that divided up the votes. Let’s hope the participation by new candidates has shown the city we do need inclusion and change in some key areas like housing and infrastructure,” Graham said.

The city’s longest-serving councilmember, Tibby DeJulio had more than twice as many votes as his opponent. DeJulio, who has been on council ever since the city formed in 2005, had 1,793 votes (68.91%) to challenger and fellow High Point resident Colin A. Hubbard, who had 809 votes (31.09%).

District 6 incumbent Andy Bauman easily held off challengers Jeff Howe to keep his seat in the unofficial returns. Bauman had 1,732 votes, (62.5%), to Howe’s 1,039 votes, (37.5%).

Howe offered his congratulations to Bauman. He said he was disappointed in coming up short in his campaign, but it was a wonderful experience.

“I have had the opportunity to meet hundreds of residents and many community leaders to discuss public policy issues. Sandy Springs is a diverse community of great well intentioned people,” Howe said. “Looking forward, I will continue to employ my skills and strengths in other public service-orientated opportunities.”

City Council DistrictCandidate% of Vote# of Votes
1Megan Harris36.75%1,073
1John Paulson (I)*63.25%1,847
2Melody Kelley*50.83%984
2Linda Trickey49.17%952
3Melissa Mular*50.72%2,207
3Leslie Mullis33.9%1,475
3Eric Newberg15.38%669
4Tochie Blad20.67%454
4Vern Graham10.47%230
4Jody Reichel (I)*51.73%1,136
4Michelle Sullivan17.12%376
5Tibby DeJulio (I)*68.91%1,793
5Colin Hubbard31.09%809
6Andy Bauman (I)*62.50%1,732
6Jeff Howe37.50%1,039
* Projected Winner

Update: This story was updated with comments from some of the candidates.

Bob Pepalis

Bob Pepalis covers Sandy Springs for Reporter Newspapers.