Longwell elected next Wichita mayor

Jeff Longwell has been elected Wichita’s next mayor.

He will replace outgoing mayor Carl Brewer, who has served as mayor since 2007. Brewer was re-elected in 2011 with 69 percent of the vote.

Longwell received 22,132 votes, which counted as 59 percent of the vote. Sam Williams, his opponent, received 13,350 votes, 35 percent of the vote. A total of 35,482 votes were cast in the mayoral election. Those numbers were reported by sedgwickcounty.org.

Shortly before 9 p.m. Tuesday, Williams called Longwell, conceding defeat to Longwell, and congratulating Longwell on his victory.

Longwell will be sworn in as mayor April 14, a week after the election.

“I just feel so overwhelmed and blessed,” Longwell said shortly after he was announced as mayor. “The fact that I’m getting to work with an awesome city council team is just awesome. There’s a lot of work we have to do to get this community back together.”

In an interview with KWCH-DT shortly after he conceded defeat, Williams compared losing the election to losing an advertising account. He said it never feels good when you do a lot of hard work to achieve something, and the results are not approved.

“We had a great vision for what we could do for Wichita,” Williams said. “We’re going to keep doing that.”

Longwell is a graduate of Wichita West High School and a graduate of Wichita State. He and his wife, Susie, have a daughter, Angela, twin sons, Ryan and Bryan, and one granddaughter, Marissa.

Longwell served for 12 years on the Maize Board of Education. According to his website, Longwell served as president, vice president, governmental relations representative and on the board’s journey to excellence strategic planning team during his tenure on the board.

Following his stint on the Maize Board, Longwell became a Wichita City Council member in 2007. He was appointed the District V City Councilmember in April 2007. Longwell was re-elected in April 2011.

According to his website, Williams has been involved in developing more flood control, increased public safety and building better access to West Wichita.

Longwell’s professional career began in 1984, according to his website, when he was general manager for Thermal Trade Graphics, a position he held until 2005. He then served as marketing director for The Print Source for three years and has been vice president of Ad Astra Print Resources since 2008.

His website lists his involvement in the community as a WSU West Side Campus Advisory Board Member, Trans-net Advisory Board Member, Sunrise Rotary Club President and charter member.

Longwell said one of his first goals as mayor is to rework public transit in the city, especially in downtown Wichita.