In the general election earlier this month for the two remaining
Burbank Unified School District school board seats, the real race
came down to the third seat, with retired teacher Ted Bunch and
businessman Larry Applebaum battling for each vote in the city’s 42
Bunch came out the winner, by 449 votes, along with top
vote-getter Paul Krekorian, who is an attorney. Incumbent Mike
McDonald was a distant fourth.
“I should have started walking precincts a lot sooner,” Applebaum
said of his loss. He did not start campaigning until January.
In several precincts to the west of the Golden State (5) Freeway,
Applebaum and Bunch ran neck and neck, but Applebaum said he
struggled because Bunch is a longtime resident of that area. In
Precinct 42, a wedge-shaped area bounded by Vanowen Street on the
south and the city limits on the north, Bunch received two more votes
than Applebaum, and in an adjacent precinct south of Vanowen Street,
Bunch again led Applebaum by two votes.
Krekorian received at least 30% of the votes in more than half of
the city’s precincts. In one precinct east of the Golden State (5)
Freeway, near the Glendale border, Krekorian amassed 52.4% of the
“It was important that all of us who were elected appealed to all
parts of the city,” Krekorian said. “It would be unfortunate if the
city had clear divisions in electing a new board.”
Krekorian won 23 of the city’s 42 precincts and tied with Bunch in
a precinct between Hollywood Way and the city’s border with the Los
Angeles portion of Toluca Lake. Both candidates received 21 votes in
this precinct, while Applebaum trailed closely with 18 votes.
One trend that remained constant was voter dissatisfaction with
the current school board. Although incumbent Mike McDonald squeezed
through the February primary, in the general election he finished
last in all but one precinct, sometimes by just a few votes, but most
times, lagging at a distant fourth.
Bunch and McDonald did not return calls for comment.
On May 15, Krekorian and Bunch will join Dave Kemp, who won the
third open seat in the February primary election, when the three are
sworn in as school board members.