It was the official swearing in of Summit County officials Wednesday evening, as Executive Russ Pry, Clerk of Courts Daniel Horrigan, Fiscal Officer Kristen Scalise and 9 council members took office.
Horrigan and Scalise were sworn in by Judge Tom Teodosio and Pry was sworn in by Judge Carol Dezso at the John S. Knight Center. More than 200 people attended.
Scalise was emotional when she spoke, pausing several times to recapture her voice.
“It is truly a special time for me. It’s my first elected position. I am truly honored to be serving you,” she said. “It is an experience of a lifetime for me. I am passionate about the fiscal office and its employees. I am very proud to stand before you as your elected fiscal officer.”
She joked about not knowing how plentiful the parades were in Summit County and how her mother helped coordinate things for her during the campaign.
Horrigan said he was blessed with a wonderful staff and supportive family.
“Winning always feels great and I am excited about the new term,” he said.
He joked about his family bringing a Bible for the ceremony. His daughters brought him their Bible, an illustrated children’s version.
Pry thanked his county employees for showing up.
“There is no better county than Summit County. We have the best group of employees who care about the people here,” he said. “Four years have gone by and we have dealt with the hardest challenges. We have had to cut $100 million out of our budget and we are down 600 employees, but we are still providing quality service, thoughtfully working together ... to make Summit County the most cooperative place to live, work and play.”
The nine council members were sworn in at the Ohio Building in a less-formal setting. The council then had an organizational meeting to elect officers for the year. Council member Gloria Rodgers asked the members to consider sharing the leadership role and put a limit of two years for anyone serving as president. She said “the responsibility should be passed around so that more people will be able to serve. Unfortunately neither I nor Bill [Roemer] will ever get that chance.”
She and Roemer are the only Republicans.
The council voted 9 to 2 to re-elect Jerry Feeman as president for his third one-year term, and Councilwoman Paula Prentice was chosen vice president with seven of the 11 votes. Nick Kostandaras Sr., who served as vice president last year, was nominated and received four votes.
Marilyn Miller can be reached at 330-996-3098 or firstname.lastname@example.org.