Editor’s Note: As we approach the March Primary Election, The Daily Sentinel will be running articles allowing the candidates in contested races to introduce themselves and tell the voters why they are running for office. Each candidate is asked, in their own words, to respond to two questions — tell us about yourself and why are you running for this office — with a word limit set for each response. Candidate profiles are listed alphabetically.
MEIGS COUNTY — Republican voters in Meigs County will be voting on candidates in multiple contested races, including Meigs County Commissioner. Candidates for the first Meigs County Commissioner seat to be decided in 2020 are Shannon and incumbent Randy Smith.
Tell us about yourself:
I grew up in Little Hocking, Ohio, and graduated from Warren High School. I joined the Army as a reservist in 1986 and served thru 1992. In 1992, I was accepted into the five-year millwright apprenticeship program and have been a union millwright since, Local 443 (FKA Local 1755). My first seven years as a millwright I worked in many of the power houses up and down the Ohio, Kraton (FKA Shell Chemical), Eramet (FKA Elkem), Constellium, and at the Toyota Motor Manufacturing plant in Buffalo, W.Va. In 2000, I accepted an opportunity in project management and have since managed over a quarter of a billion dollars’ worth of project monies, along with completing over 3.5 million SAFE man hours worked.
I understand it is important to share these facts so you as a voter trust that I am serious about doing right by the folks I serve, whether it is the company’s project I manage or the people working for me. I will use my knowledge of projects and budgets to be a good steward of the county’s assets, and be fiscally responsible for the funds I will oversee. I will create an avenue of open communication, as I believe this is a key component to success.
Why are you running for this office?
I have lived in Meigs County for 21 years with my wife of 28 years, Lori Miller. I am a Life Member of the NRA. The reason I am running for commissioner stems from the relationships I have developed with many of the folks involved in Meigs County programs that I believe are important. I am proud to be a founding member of our local non-profit Loyalty Is Forever (LIF) and to have helped raise over $125,000 for our programs. In November of 2019 LIF became a 501(c)3 and our group is applying for grants that will grow our efforts for the betterment of the county. I have supported and support Meigs Council on Aging March for Meals, and the Blakeslee Center, the Meigs County Chamber of Commerce, Meigs County Community Fund, and am a member of the Meigs County Community Improvement Corporation. I understand the role as a commissioner is to be available for all elected officials and residents, and to plan for the future of Meigs County. I want to be part of that future and invite anyone to call me to share their comments and concerns. I look forward to the opportunity to answer your questions. Call me anytime at 740-508-0628. Please leave a message if I am not available and I will return your call. I appreciate your careful consideration and I am asking for your vote, this March, in the Meigs County Primary.
Tell us about yourself:
My name is Rev. Randy Smith. I am in my 8th year serving as your county commissioner. I am a lifelong resident of Meigs County and my children represent the 5th generation of our family to call Meigs County their home. I married my grade school sweetheart, Beverly (Stewart) Smith and together we raise our four children with the same values we were raised with. I always wanted a career in public service. After Graduating in 1997 from Meigs High School I became a police officer. A year later I would begin my career with the county serving first as a welfare fraud investigator and later a child support investigator for JFS. I went back to school again and in 2010 this time obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Ministry. Over the past 6 years I have been the Sr. Pastor of the Trinity Congregational Church in Pomeroy. I am active in the lives of my children, in the ministry of my church, and in this wonderful community of ours. I am one of the “obnoxiously proud” residents that defend Meigs County as if it were a member of my family. This I hope has been clearly evident by my committed service to you these past few years.
Why are you running for this office?
My desire to retain my seat and continue to serve is the same thing that motivated me to run in 2012 and again in 2016. Many of you I’m sure had the same thoughts I did. Why are we being overlooked by the state? Why do things happening else were seem to be just out of our reach? Over these past few years those questions have motivated me to make certain that Meigs County has a seat at every table possible both with the state government and the nation. Last year I received a presidential appointment to the Ohio County Commissioners Association Board of Directors and I received it again in 2020. A seat never held by a Meigs County Commissioner. Meigs County became a member of the National Association of Counties under my administration as well. Those two associations keep me in Columbus and in D.C. more than I ever thought I would be, but the results have been amazing. Along with those two associations I am a member of the Community Action Board, Family and Children First Council, CCAO Justice and Public Safety committee, CCAO Small County Affairs Committee, and I have sat on several ADHOC committees formed by the Governor of Ohio. During my administration almost $1,500,000.00 have been allocated through our community development block grant benefiting everything from neighborhood revitalization project, fire departments, parks, and more. When I am not attending meetings or out on the road for the county you will find me in the office. This job should never be a supplement to someone’s retirement or their full-time job. This has to be the full-time job. A commitment I made in 2012 that I continue today. Your support is a blessing my family and I and I appreciate your support in 2020 and beyond.
Editor’s Note: An article detailing the candidates for the second Meigs County Commissioner race will appear in the Friday edition and online at mydailysentinel.com.