Eduardo Perdomo, a Hispanic businessman, was elected president last week of next year's annual Hispano-Americano Festival, one of the most influential positions in the city's Latino community.

In one of the most hotly contested races for the festival presidency, Perdomo garnered 770 votes to beat fellow businessman Xavier Garcia, who gained 383 votes during last Tuesday's balloting at the Marie Reed Learning Center in the heart of Adams-Morgan, the site of the festival.

A close observer of the election said that Perdomo, who was considered the early front-runner because of a well-organized campaign, was able to get busloads of his supporters to the polls on election day.

Perdomo, who lives in Mount Vernon, will take over as the chief organizer of the 16-year-old cultural festival, which is held in July and fills neighborhood streets with exhibits, food stands and a mass of high-spirited dancers, singers and spectators.

An estimated 65,000 Hispanic residents live in the city, most in Adams-Morgan.

Also elected on Perdomo's slate: first vice president Lucy Hernandez, second vice president Elean Rocha, secretary Colon Martinez, assistant secretary Beatriz Perez, treasurer Ernesto Clavijo and assistant treasurer Leonor Rodriguez.

Perdomo promised a bigger festival than last year's, which attracted 200,000 people and said he planned to include more cultural exhibits, and an international amateur soccer tournament.