WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — Citizens of Wichita Falls have chosen the person who will serve as the city’s next mayor.

Local insurance agent Tim Short has won a majority of the votes to become the next mayor of Wichita Falls, taking the place of Stephen Santellana, who will have reached his term limit at the expiration of his current term later this month.

Short defeated his three opponents, businesswoman and founder of Frank & Joe’s Coffee Shop Carol Murray, community advocate Beverly Taylor Ellis, and local businessman and write-in candidate Scott Poenitzsch, who also campaigned to become the city’s mayor.

After the ballots were cast on Tuesday, November 7, 2023, the following unofficial results were reported by the Wichita County Election Administrator’s office:

  • Tim Short — 5,563 votes (63.37%)
  • Carol Murray — 1,663 votes (18.94%)
  • Beverly Taylor Ellis — 965 votes (10.99%)
  • Scott Poenitzsch — 588 votes (6.70%)

Short grew up in Shallow Water, Texas, and attended Texas Tech University. He said all of his roommates in college were from various parts of Texoma. When he had the opportunity to come to State Farm in Wichita Falls, he jumped at the chance.

Short said his biggest inspiration has always been his father.

“He inspired me to never quit, to always do more than you think you can,” Short said. “And that’s how I was the first one of my family that ever graduated from college – because of him.”

Short was among the four candidates that met in the KFDX studio for a debate in October 2023, where they answered questions from viewers and explained how they intend to tackle the biggest issues facing Wichita Falls if they were to be elected as the city’s next mayor. A replay of the debate can be viewed in its entirety on Texoma’s Homepage.

Residents of Wichita Falls living in City Council District 3, City Council District 4, and City Council District 5 also cast their ballots to decide who will represent them on the Wichita Falls City Council.

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