Terry Hartwick clinched a runoff election to become the next mayor of North Little Rock.
Hartwick defeated opponent Tracy Steele to secure the seat. This marks a return to the mayor’s office for Hartwick, who previously served as the North Little Rock mayor from 1985 to 1988. He currently serves as the director for the North Little Rock Parks and Recreation Department.
Steele received a greater number of votes during the regular election, capturing roughly 45 percent to Hartwick’s 33 percent. However, a runoff was forced because candidates must win at least 40 percent of the vote and lead by 20 percent in order to win a general election.
During the runoff, Hartwick captured 680 more votes than Steele, according to the unofficial voting results. Hartwick received 5,417 votes to Steele’s 4,737.
In a Facebook post, Hartwick said that he was “truly honored to be your 20th Mayor” after the results were released. He later said that Steele had called to congratulate him on the win.
“I just received a gracious call from Tracy Steele offering his congratulations. We both agree that there’s work to be done and I look forward to getting to work for the citizens of North Little Rock,” Hartwick said.
Hartwick told Arkansas Money & Politics in an earlier interview that his first priority as mayor will be focusing on the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as ensuring the city’s continued economic development efforts.
“The first priority I have is to combat the coronavirus pandemic to help save lives and the health of our citizens. Beyond, that job and economic growth is my greatest priority. It is my greatest strength,” he said. “As leader of the Chamber of Commerce, I grew the organization from 200 members to over 1500 members and helped bring thousands of jobs to NLR including Glazers, Ben E. Keith, Caterpillar Dickey Stephens Park and the expansion of the Senior Center. Continuing this effort to bring and create jobs is my top priority.”
Hartwick will replace outgoing Mayor Joe Smith, who did not run for reelection.