Melgar claims victory in D7 race after Engardio concedes

Myrna Melgar is claiming victory in the District 7 supervisor race after her top challenger conceded defeat Wednesday.

Myrna Melgar is claiming victory in the District 7 supervisor race after her top challenger conceded defeat Wednesday.

Melgar, a former Planning Commission president, held a considerable lead of 1,901 votes over second-place candidate Joel Engardio in the latest round of election results released Wednesday afternoon. She had 15,090 votes under the ranked-choice voting system.

Melgar pulled ahead despite having fewer first-choice votes than both Engardio and third-place candidate Vilaska Nguyen. Engardio led in first-choice votes with 7,581 ballots cast in his favor.

“This is not my victory, it is our victory,” Melgar said in an email to her supporters. “Running for supervisor amid this pandemic hasn’t been easy, but I’m grateful for the experience. I want to extend my deep gratitude and respect to the other candidates in the race who ran strong campaigns and have shown a deep commitment to the welfare of our community.”

Melgar told the San Francisco Examiner that Engardio called her in the morning and “graciously” offered his congratulations.

In a campaign email that same morning, Engardio also indicated to his supporters that he lost the race.

“We won the most first-place votes, but we lost after ranked choice voting was factored in,” Engardio said. “While there are still tens of thousands of votes left to be counted in San Francisco, our outcome is unlikely to change.”

Engardio was the leading moderate in the race while Melgar drew support from both sides of aisle.

Mayor London Breed dual-endorsed both candidates, but outgoing Board of Supervisors President Norman Yee — who is aligned with the progressives — endorsed Melgar as his successor.

Nguyen was considered the farthest-left candidate in the race.

Melgar said she is the first ever Latina to be elected to the Board of Supervisors without being appointed first, as well as the first woman elected to represent District 7.

The district includes neighborhoods like West Portal and the area around Lake Merced.

Melgar has credited her victory to her desire to appeal to a broad base, drawing support from both moderate and progressive groups.

There were a total of seven candidates in the running.

This story was updated Wednesday afternoon to include additional comment and the latest results.

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

mbarba@sfexaminer.com

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