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6 South Bay Cities Choose New Mayors

April 17, 1986

Mayors were elected by city councils this week in six South Bay cities--Avalon, Carson, El Segundo, Hermosa Beach, Lomita and Palos Verdes Estates.

In Avalon, Hugh T. (Bud) Smith, 60, was elected for the second time to the largely ceremonial mayor's job. Smith, a retired commercial pilot, served as mayor from 1978 to 1980 while on the City Council from 1974 to 1982. He was reelected to the council in 1984.

Last year, Smith submitted a petition to the council with more than 150 signatures asking that he be made mayor. All five council members were nominated, but George Scott emerged as the victor after getting an endorsement from Smith, who could not get three votes.

Sylvia Muise, who was reelected to the Carson City Council last week, was chosen mayor by the council there, replacing Kay Calas. Muise, 46, served for three months on the council in 1980 after being elected to fill the unexpired term of a councilman ousted in a recall election. Two years later, she was elected to the council in her own right.

Unanimous Choice

In El Segundo, Jack Siadek, 45, was elected mayor by a unanimous vote of the City Council. Siadek, formerly part of a pro-business, minority faction on a council that generally favored controlled commercial growth, replaces Mayor Charles (Chip) Armstrong, who was defeated for reelection.

Siadek, a restaurateur and 16-year resident, is in his second term on the council.

In Hermosa Beach, Tony DeBellis, who has served as mayor pro tem since July, was unanimously elected to a nine-month term as mayor. It is council tradition that the mayor pro tem succeed the outgoing mayor. Terms are set at nine months so all five council members have the opportunity to serve as mayor every four years.

DeBellis, 39, is a city planner for the city of Inglewood. He was elected to the council in 1984. He succeeds Jack Wood, an outspoken and controversial mayor who was defeated in his council reelection bid last week.

Council veteran Hal Hall, 76, was elected mayor in Lomita, taking over from outgoing Mayor Chuck Belba. A council member since 1974, Hall has served as mayor twice before. The owner of a paint store, Hall was reelected to the council last week.

Ruth Gralow, who was elected last week to her first full term on the Palos Verdes Estates City Council, was chosen mayor by a unanimous vote of the council. Gralow paid tribute to outgoing Mayor James Kinney, saying, "Your low-key style would throw Clint Eastwood off guard."

A city resident for 10 years, Gralow, who is 49, was a member of the Planning Commission when she was appointed to the council in 1984. She is president of Palos Verdes Beautiful Foundation, which encourages people to donate money and time to preserve open space. Gralow said her first goal as mayor is continued preservation of canyons, parklands and trees, "our rural ambiance."

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