Former Cuyahoga Falls Mayor Don Robart has a new role in government.
Robart has been tapped as a regional liaison for Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted’s office, representing eight counties in Northeast Ohio, including Stark and Portage. He replaces Brian Daley, a former Summit County Board of Elections member who held the state post for about 2½ years.
“I’m not one to sit around,” Robart said in an interview this week. He said he has been looking for a new job since losing his re-election bid to Mayor Don Walters in November.
Daley said it was time for him to retire from the post and thinks Robart will be a good replacement.
“He’s a good guy and has been around the block,” Daley said. “He knows what he’s doing. I think he’ll be great.”
Matt McClellan, a spokesman for Husted, said Robart will be the liaison for Lake, Geauga, Ashtabula, Portage, Trumbull, Stark, Mahoning and Columbiana counties. He will attend elections boards meetings in these counties, hold regional meetings and represent Husted at various functions in the area.
Robart described his new gig as “the eyes and ears of the secretary of state.” He was at the Stark County Board of Elections meeting Monday at which the panel voted to hold a hearing today to determine if Sheriff George T. Maier, a Democrat, can appear on the May primary ballot.
Maier was removed from office, then reinstated, as courts weighed whether he met legal qualifications for the job.
“It seems like a no-brainer,” Robart said. “The Ohio Supreme Court removed him from office.”
Robart, who draws from his 28 years as mayor, said he isn’t afraid to offer his opinion to board members.
“I let them know if it isn’t necessarily the opinion of the secretary of state,” he said.
Robart said he wouldn’t rule out running for office again.
“Obviously, it’s in my soul,” he said. “I always take it a day at a time. I believe you do the best at what you’re doing and opportunities present themselves.
For now, Robart said, he’s enjoying his new role and getting to know board members and elections leaders throughout Northeast Ohio.
“It’s an interesting angle, a different spin,” he said.
Robart will be paid $40,000 a year in his new position.
Stephanie Warsmith can be reached at 330-996-3705 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter: @swarsmith and on Facebook: www.facebook.com/swarsmith. Read the Beacon Journal’s political blog at www.ohio.com/blogs/ohio-politics.