Former Pine Bluff Police Chief Ivan Whitfield defeated Alderman Bill Brumett for the Ward 3 seat by a vote of 833 to 625. All results are complete but unofficial until the Jefferson County Election Commission certifies them.

Whitfield needed 830 votes to avoid a runoff. With 833, he was three over that mark, which shows you that every vote does indeed count.

We wish Whitfield all the best in his new endeavor. We have always admired him and thought he did an admirable job as police chief.

But we would be remiss if we did not say we are sad to see Brumett leaving the council. He’s been a staple at City Hall since 1996, and he is currently the senior member of the council.

Bill is one of those folks who truly make Pine Bluff special. He loves this city and promotes it any chance he can get. In fact, we have adopted one of his slogans — “Pine Bluff Proud” — as a way to note good deeds done by residents of our great city.

Losing someone of Bill’s caliber from city government at a tedious time when we are in the process of rebuilding and moving things forward concerns us. That isn’t to say that Mr. Whitfield won’t do a great job. We believe he will.

However, if we had one wish, it would be to somehow make room for Bill Brumett on the City Council. We encourage Bill to keep working for our city in the private sector, and we know he will. Additionally, we are sure he will run again.

Welcome, BPA

We want to say a hearty thank you to the good folks at Grider Field and to all of the members of the Black Pilots of America who are currently in our city enjoying Operation Skyhook. The pilots’ goal is to help educate young folks about aviation while performing stunts and giving free airplane rides. They do great deeds, and we hope they are having a fabulous time in our city.

If you get a chance, head out to Grider Field today and say hello. If you have kids, take them as well. They’ll have a grand time.

Open house

With the election and other news events keeping us very busy, we haven’t had a chance to formally thank those of you who attended our open house earlier this month. It was a giant success, and we are planning to make it an annual event. There was food, fellowship, door prizes, a presentation about what we do and a press room tour.

We feel like it connected us to the community in a way that has never been done before. We are constantly evolving and trying to get better for you, our readers. And we want you to know that our doors are always open to you. If you have any questions, please drop by.

Also, tell your friends about us. Let them know that The Commercial is THE place for local news. It’s something we take great pride in. And we also take great pride in knowing that we have the support of so many readers. Thanks again.