Ninth District council candidates Joni Ricks-Oddie and Ginny Gonzales. Courtesy photos.

Early election returns show Joni Ricks-Oddie, an educator, with a commanding lead over her challenger in the race to represent North Long Beach on the City Council.

Ricks-Oddie had 65% of the vote, and her competitor Ginny Gonzales had 35% of the vote. The Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk’s office said it will release updated totals Friday with updates continuing all the way to Dec. 5 if necessary.

Ricks-Oddie was the heavy favorite heading into Tuesday’s race after nearly winning outright in March over Gonzales, a longtime resident of the district.

Ricks-Oddie was endorsed by Councilmember Rex Richardson, who has held the seat for eight years and is leading in the race for mayor. She is an educator, city commissioner and member of the DeForest Park Neighborhood Association, and has said she wants to focus on issues related to city spending and homelessness.

Gonzalez has described herself as a candidate for the people. She is a 20-year resident of the 9th District and a certified public accountant.

In addition to Richardson, Ricks-Oddie is endorsed by U.S. Rep. Nanette Barragán, Sen. Lena Gonzalez, and all of the 9th District neighborhood association presidents, among others. A campaign website for Gonzalez has not been active through the election season.

For up-to-date election results, visit

Editor’s note: This story was updated with more recent vote totals.