Kathy Sheehan becomes first female mayor in Albany - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

Kathy Sheehan becomes first female mayor in Albany

From left: Katherine Sheehan, Jessie Calhoun, Joseph Sullivan, Theresa Portelli From left: Katherine Sheehan, Jessie Calhoun, Joseph Sullivan, Theresa Portelli

ALBANY, N.Y. -- For the first time in twenty years, Albany has elected a new mayor after Tuesday's election, with Democrat Kathy Sheehan claiming the win.

"The best days are ahead of us," says Kathy Sheehan, as she took to the podium for the first time Tuesday night declaring victory. Sheehan won by a large margin of 84 percent, taking 12,369 votes.

She faced off against Republican Jesse Calhoun, Conservative Joe Sullivan, and Green Party Candidate Theresa Portelli. Two people waged vocal write-in campaigns, Independents Marlon Anderson and Reverend Valerie Faust.

This year's election made history for the city of Albany, as Kathy Sheehan declared victory as the city's first female mayor.

Sheehan arrived at the Polish Community Center in Albany to a large welcome of supporters.  She has held a strong lead in the polls for weeks now.

"It was beyond my wildest imagination when this whole thing started to see how excited people got," says Sheehan.  "We're not always going to agree, but it's so wonderful to see people engaged."

Sheehan admits she has big shoes to fill.

Mayor Jerry Jennings says he will offer as much support as Sheehan wants during the transition period.  Sheehan says she knows the city faces a tough budget ahead, but is confident she is fit to work through it.

"We've got to create a city government we can afford," says Sheehan.  "It's not going to be easy, we have a significant structural deficit.  I'm ready to roll up my sleeves and do the work, and I think my experience as treasurer will help me tremendously."

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