MARBLEHEAD — Jenny Armini was elected to the 8th Essex seat in the Massachusetts House of Representatives during Tuesday night’s primary, according to unofficial results.
Without a Republican challenger on the ballot for November, Armini, a Marblehead Democrat, effectively secured the seat that represents Swampscott and Marblehead, along with Precinct 4 in Ward 3 and Ward 4 in Lynn.
“This campaign was a huge community effort and I’m excited to get started working on behalf of the community,” Armini said.
She won with 2,303 votes, edging out Tristan Smith, of Swampscott, who received 1,983 votes in a crowded six-way race in the Democratic primary, according to unofficial results.
In third was Doug Thompson, of Swampscott (1,538 votes), followed by Terri Tauro, of Marblehead (961 votes); Polly Titcomb, of Swampscott (957 votes); and Diane Slavit Baylis, of Marblehead (557 votes).
Armini, 53, will take over the seat left vacant earlier this year by Lori Ehrlich, who stepped down after she was appointed to a regional administrator role with FEMA.
Ehrlich congratulated Armini in a Facebook post Tuesday night.
“I have no doubt that you will serve the fine people of the 8th Essex with honesty and integrity,” Ehrlich wrote. “There will be challenges ahead but if you do, you will find that representing this district is an honor that deepens over time.”
Armini is a professional speechwriter and received a bachelor’s in government from the University of Virginia and a master’s in public administration from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.
She lives at 8 Russell St. in Marblehead with her husband Michael and children David (19) and Sydney (16).
“The campaign is a learning process, and I need to continue that process of reaching out to the community, finding out what people are worried about, what they want from state government, and really take those conversations to the next level,” Armini said.
This is her first time being elected to public office.
“With a large dose of sentimentality, I proudly pass the gavel to you,” Ehrlich wrote in her post.
In recent days, Armini, Baylis, Tauro and Titcomb issued a joint statement criticizing Smith for securing a series of endorsements from high-profile Massachusetts politicians who they said were friends of Smith’s father, a political lobbyist and former lawmaker.
They also took aim at Thompson for self-funding much of his campaign and noted that less than 30% of the Legislature is made up of women.
“Representation matters,” Armini said. “Ruth Bader Ginsburg said women belong in every room where decisions are being made. And so it’s incredibly important that we continue to work hard to get more women in those rooms.
“I’m grateful to have the opportunity to be one of those women, but I also want to continue to support others who are looking to do the same thing,” she said.
Meanwhile, in the Senate race for the 2nd Essex District, final results from Salem, Beverly, Danvers and Peabody confirm incumbent Joan Lovely’s win.
Lovely, who will advance to the November final to face Republican Damien Anketell, of Peabody, led her Democrat challenger, Kyle Davis, of Danvers, 17,311 to 5,817.
Lovely is seeking her sixth, two-year term in the Senate.