Two incumbents not running for reelection


In Waukesha, plenty of seats are up for election. But there are no races.

In all, six aldermanic seats and three school board seats will be on the general election ballot on April 4. However, unless write-in candidates post a challenge before then, voters will have no choices to make.

The deadline for candidates to file declarations of candidacy and nomination papers was Jan. 3. Because there are no challengers for any of the open seats, there will not be a primary, which otherwise would have been held Feb. 21.

City's 6 for 6

Two current Waukesha aldermen won't run again for their seats when their terms are up this spring, but their expected replacements won't have any challengers either.

According to city documents, Aldermen Chris Hernandez and Andy Reiland will not run for reelection in April. Instead, two candidates – Cassie Rodriguez and Dean Lemke – will fill their seats in aldermanic Districts 3 and 13, respectively.

The other candidates running unopposed are Aldermen Eric Payne in District 2, Adam Jankowski in District 6, Daniel Manion in District 7 and Steve Johnson in District 10.

Assuming she is not overtaken by a write-in candidate, Rodriguez will be one of only two women on the council after the election. The other female alderman is Kathleen Cummings, who represents District 9.

Lemke, who has lived in the city for decades, has some experience running for public office. He made a failed bid for the council in 2014 when he ran against Reiland.

Reiland said he chose not to run this year for a number of reasons, among them increasing job commitments and the desire to give others a "chance to ... play a role in the future of Waukesha."

"My time as alderman has been extremely rewarding," he said in an email. "Every time I walked into the council chamber I have felt a sense of honor and respect for the position. Getting to know the city staff and those citizens that volunteer countless hours to make this city what it is (is) very humbling.

"I know that the city faces some difficult future decisions if we want to maintain the positive direction we are headed," Reiland added. "I have all the confidence that our current and future aldermen will be up to the task."

Reiland, who represents the city's west side, was voted council president in 2015, after serving on the common council for four years. He's a longtime Waukesha resident.

Hernandez said he wanted to step down from the council to focus on his family – he has two kids – and his budding career in law enforcement.

"There's no doubt in mind (that) I'm going to miss it," he said. "I just really need to spend time with my family."

He added that he also thinks it's "time for some new ideas and a different perspective" on the council.

Hernandez was first elected to the council in 2008. His family has a long history of public service in Waukesha. His father, Richard Hernandez, was an alderman and mayoral candidate.

Three school seats

For the Waukesha School Board, members Joe Como currently board president), Barbara Brzenk and Karin Rajnicek will run uncontested for three-year terms in the April 4 election.

Last spring there was a five-person race for the three spots on the board. The race had two incumbents — William Baumgart and Ellen Langill — and three challengers — Gretchen Budde, Greg Deets and Amanda Medina-Roddy.

Read or Share this story: