With all 91 precincts reporting in Centre County, I’m humbled to announce that I have been re-elected to the Board of Commissioners with an historic vote. I’m thrilled that I will be joined by my good friend Mark Higgins. Over the last year, Mark worked tirelessly to reach out and talk to thousands of voters about his vision for the County. His energy and enthusiasm to provide better services to citizens and find ways to encourage job growth and expand entrepreneurship will be a terrific asset to the new Board. I’d also like to congratulate Commissioner Dershem on his re-election, thank Commissioner Exarchos for his years of service to Centre County, and recognize the impressive effort of Todd Kirsten’s Independent Party campaign.
I’d also like to thank my family and friends for their amazing support during the campaign. My wife Ashley has been with me every step of the way and challenges me to be a better person. My dad, mom, brother and sister remind me where I came from and keep me honest and grounded. My campaign manager Will Hughes, campaign chair Jay Meashey, and treasurer Phil Vollmer were the best team a candidate could ask for. To all the volunteers who knocked on doors, made phone calls and registered voters, I can’t thank you enough for putting in countless hours to make this victory a reality.
From the beginning, this campaign has been about bringing people together to solve the problems facing Centre County. Our message to voters was simple: you have a choice between continuing business as usual in Bellefonte or electing a new majority committed to a transparent government that works for them.
Tonight’s results make it clear: people in Centre County want a government that is accountable to them, not donors, lobbyists and special interests. The voters have recognized that we need to end campaigning in county facilities, ban gifts from lobbyists to county officials and to hold more meetings in public. That’s why they voted for Mark and me and that is what we will do as commissioners.
With tonight’s victory, we can begin to restore trust and confidence in Centre County Government. I can’t do it alone. I’m asking for your help as we continue to move Centre County. Thank you for your support. I look forward to talking with you in the coming days.
With this vote of confidence, we will build on the accomplishments of the last four years, when we held budget meetings across the county, conducted town hall meetings on voter ID laws and modernized the county website. With our new majority we will work to reform our criminal justice system and find new ways to save and create well-paying jobs in Centre County.