RAVENNA — State Rep. Kathleen Clyde is among three women who have expressed interest in the Portage County commissioner seat that will be vacated next week when Mike Kerrigan’s resignation becomes official.

Clyde was prohibited by term limits to run for her Ohio House seat again and on Nov. 6 she lost her bid to be Ohio’s next secretary of state to Frank LaRose. The Garrettsville native lives in Kent.

Democratic Party Chairman Dean DePerro said Denise Baba, a member of the Streetsboro Board of Education, and Theresa Neilsen, deputy director of the Portage County Board of Elections, have also said they’re interested.

On Monday, Kerrigan announced his plans to resign from the post effective Dec. 13. He was appointed to the position last year after the death of Maureen Frederick and won election to the position on Nov. 6.

The Portage County Democratic Central Committee is now seeking letters of intent from those who want to be considered for the appointment.

DePerro said applicants for the position must submit their letters by Wednesday. The letters must be postmarked by Wednesday or can be emailed by that day. Letters may be sent to P.O. Box 729, Ravenna, OH 44266 to DePerro’s attention; or emailed to djdeperro@gmail.com or cindymgreene@yahoo.com.

An ad-hoc committee of the party will review the letters, interview those who are interested and bring a recommendation to the party. The committee consists of Bob Howard, chairman; Cindy Greene; Frank Hairston; Denise Smith; and Mike DeLuke.

The full committee will meet on Dec. 20 to appoint one of the applicants to the position. The appointment will be confirmed by the Ohio Secretary of State. The person who is appointed will hold the position until 2020.

Candidates must be an elector of Portage County. Although the applicant will be chosen by the Democratic Central Committee, applicants do not necessarily need to be Democrats.

“We’re going to appoint a Democrat, though,” party vice chairman Brad Cromes said.

 

Reporter Diane Smith can be reached at 330-298-1139 or dsmith@recordpub.com.