John Blanton of Milwaukie easily won election Tuesday night to retain his seat on the Clackamas Fire District No. 1 Board.

Blanton beat challenger Jeffrey Davis by a 59.1 to 39.7 margin, according to early election results.

The board had appointed Blanton in October among seven qualified candidates, including Davis.

Blanton was supported by other Clackamas Fire board members in part for his service as a board member on the Clackamas Emergency Services Foundation, which has worked with the fire district’s Operation Santa to deliver cheer to low-income children. Unionized local firefighters, through their political action committee called Professional Fire Fighters of Clackamas County, also endorsed Blanton and donated $500 to his campaign.

Blanton replaced Toby Forsberg who resigned from the board last summer after moving to Gladstone, which is covered by a volunteer fire department, unlike the nearly 200 square miles of the professional fire district in North Clackamas.

Blanton retired from the state of Oregon’s department of community colleges and workforce development in May 2011. Having served as president of the North Clackamas County Chamber of Commerce, he’s also worked as a rapid-response coordinator for workforce services at Clackamas Community College, where he worked with employees laid off from the former Blue Heron Paper Co.

As a Clackamas Fire board member, he is concerned about fire-district revenue decreasing through declining property values and urban-renewal areas.

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