DANVERS — Retired Massachusetts Appeals Court Judge David Mills topped the ticket in the three-way race for two seats on the Board of Selectmen, while Selectman Dan Bennett cruised to his third term in yesterday’s annual Town Election.
Incumbent Keith Lucy, the board’s most senior member, lost in his bid to serve another three years.
In unofficial results, Mills earned 1,565 votes, Bennett came in second with 1,419 votes and Lucy chalked up 901 votes.
Less than 12.2 percent of the town’s 18,965 voters went to the polls.
“This was a very, very beautiful, personal ...” said Mills as he choked up giving his acceptance speech at Timothy’s, the former Village Green, on Route 1. “That’s who you voted for, you know who I am. I do get emotional about these things. This was a wonderful personal experience for me.”
“This was getting your vote out and having your supporters going out and voting for you,” Bennett said of the race. “I think the voters recognized I work hard for the community and I’m dedicated to doing the job and they weren’t afraid to vote for me.”
Mills said he could not have won without his supporters, who campaigned for him, collected signatures and held signs.
“I didn’t win anything, we won,” said Mills, 70, a retired 11-year state Appeals Court judge and former land use attorney whose home sits across the street from Town Hall. Mills gave up town politics while serving as a judge from 2001 to 2012, having formerly served as moderator. He has also served as a Town Meeting member.
Yesterday’s race came with the backdrop of former Selectman Mike Powers’ resignation in April, and selectmen Chairman Bill Clark saying he would like to move to nominate whoever loses. The board meets tomorrow at 6:30 p.m. in Town Hall to reorganize.