TULSA - Former Mayor Kathy Taylor won more votes than any other mayoral candidate Tuesday, but more importantly, she says two-thirds of Tulsa voters said they wanted change.
Incumbent Dewey Bartlett also advances while former City Councilor Bill Christiansen will have to watch from the sidelines.
Taylor's watch party was held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Tulsa.
Moments after stepping away from the podium, she spoke with KRMG and we asked her what the numbers told her.
"Two-thirds of Tulsans voted to elect a new mayor. Between Councilor Christiansen and myself, two-thirds of Tulsans said 'we're not satisfied with what's happening today.' And so, we're gonna look to continue to spread our message throughout the city."
She told KRMG she spoke with Christiansen by phone before stepping out to address her supporters.
Asked if she would seek his endorsement, she said, "What I want to do is get his advice and thoughts. He certainly generated great enthusiasm around his campaign, he has a great group of supporters, and I want to get his thoughts about how we go forward, because clearly, his supporters and my supporters both want change."
Tulsans chose Taylor as Mayor in April, 2006, ousting incumbent Bill LaFortune in the highest turnout for a mayoral election in the city's history.
Taylor had declined to run for re-election in 2009, citing the need to concentrate on the city's financial woes in the wake of a national economic crisis.
Among the accomplishments she lists during her term was the purchase of One Technology Center for the purpose of consolidating city government at a single location, and bringing ONEOK Field to downtown Tulsa.
She also saw through the completion of the BOK Center downtown, helped cement a deal to renovate a runway and build a new hangar at the Tulsa International Airport, and passed the $450 million Fix Our Streets package in 2008.
Taylor shepherded the city through the disastrous ice storm of December, 2007, working almost around the clock during the crisis.
One feature of Taylor's personality that friends and foes alike will attest to is her work ethic.
She said during her first term she kept her phone on 24 hours a day and she famously declined to take a salary as mayor.
When she announced in June, 2009 that she would not seek re-election, supporters and opponents alike expressed their surprise.