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Ohio Politics

Democrats seek to fill empty seat

By admin Published: February 24, 2011

By Rick Armon
Beacon Journal staff writer

At least four Democrats are seeking to fill a vacant seat on Summit County Council.

Pete Crossland, John Fickes, Sandra Kurt and Adam VanHo are campaigning to be appointed to former At-large Councilman Jon Poda's position.

Poda, a Democrat, resigned from the 11-member body this month to take a job as a deputy director with the county Fiscal Office.

The Democratic Party will meet at 7 p.m. March 3 at North High School, 985 Gorge Blvd., to hear nominations, and precinct committee members will vote on the candidates.

A candidate must receive at least 51 percent of the vote to win the seat, said Megan Moreland, executive director of the party.

Crossland, 73, of Akron, previously served on council for 22 years. He lost his at-large seat last fall, finishing fourth in a race for three seats. He is a retired college professor and former state representative.

Fickes, 55, of Akron, is a partner in the law firm Brouse McDowell. He also is chairman of the Akron Metropolitan Housing Authority board.

Kurt, 39, of Akron, is an Akron City Council member and an engineer at Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.

VanHo, 35, works for the law firm Burdon and Merlitti. He has served as an assistant Ohio attorney general and as a prosecutor in Summit and Montgomery counties.

Poda had been re-elected to a four-year term last fall. Whoever is appointed to his seat will have to run for election in November 2012 to serve the final two years of the term.

Rick Armon can be reached at 330-996-3569 or



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