Lisa Toomey and PG Narayanan won four-year seats on the Eden Prairie City Council in the election decided Tuesday, with Toomey topping other candidates in 18 of 20 voting precincts.
Unofficial totals from the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State had Toomey with 19,366 votes, Narayanan with 17,262 votes and Ryan Miske, who was not elected, with 15,056 votes.
This was the first city council campaign for Toomey and Miske. Narayanan finished as a runner-up in 2018 but was later appointed to fill a vacant seat, making this his second run for council and first win.
“I am extremely humbled and happy and looking forward to working with everyone on the council,” said Toomey. “I’m looking forward to helping all the residents of Eden Prairie.”
She thought her community involvement was a key to the victory.
“I’m so excited,” Narayanan said. “Winning is all about people helping you. And the support I got from the community was unbelievable.”
Said Miske: “My congratulations to Lisa and PG on their victory tonight. I have been humbled to speak and interact with so many wonderful members of the Eden Prairie community. As I have stated, they are what make Eden Prairie such an exceptional place to live, work, and raise a family. I look forward to serving our community in any way I can in the future.”
Both Toomey and Narayanan commented on how difficult it was to campaign during the COVID-19 pandemic, which eliminated large events and dissuaded some candidates from knocking on doors. Both relied mostly on direct mail, campaign signs, social media, and other alternatives.
They will join incumbent council members Mark Freiberg and Kathy Nelson as well as Mayor Ron Case on the city council.
Toomey comes with experience in finance and marketing, and more recently in the nonprofit sector, including volunteer board experience with the Eden Prairie Crime Prevention Fund and The PROP Shop. During the campaign, she said her top three priorities are safety, affordable housing, and the health of local businesses.
Narayanan is self-employed, owns a tech business, and also has nonprofit involvement. When asked during the campaign about his priorities, Narayanan mentioned the importance of maintaining Eden Prairie’s status as a great place to live, work, and raise a family – and, in order to ensure that quality, deal with sustainability and climate change. He also gave high priority to affordable-housing solutions and to encouraging policies that enhance cultural experiences and racial equity.
Miske is a lawyer and law-firm partner as well as the owner of an Eden Prairie office building. He had said that his top three priorities were getting Eden Prairie through the COVID-19 pandemic safely and quickly, the safe and effective integration of Southwest LRT, and management of the city’s finances.
(Mark A. Weber is executive director of the Eden Prairie Community Foundation. PG Narayanan is a member of its board of directors.)