With a full board again in place, the Miami County Board of Elections agreed April 25 to begin review of applications for the open position of elections deputy director.

The review was scheduled to begin during an executive session of the board scheduled for May 2.

At the April 25 meeting, the board welcomed new Republican member Rob Long, an attorney from Troy. He was appointed by the county Republican Party to fill the position of Jose Lopez, who left the board at the end of his term in February. Long said he was sworn in before the meeting by Judge Christopher Gee of county Common Pleas Court.

The board had agreed at a previous meeting that all four board members would be involved in the hiring process for the new deputy director although that person will be a Democrat. The elections director is Bev Kendall, a Republican.

The goal of involving both Republican and Democrat board members in the selection is to possibly help reduce turnover in the director and deputy director positions, board Chairman Dave Fisher, a Democrat from Bethel Township, said.

He joined the four-member board this year along with fellow Democrat Audrey Gillespie of Piqua and Long. The fourth board member, Ryan King, a Republican from Piqua, has been on the board for around a year.

The previous elections board fired Deputy Director Eric Morgan of Tipp City in January.

The board first will review applications and resumes submitted for the position so far.

“Historically, it has been, and it is somewhat the Democrats hire but, historically, it has been kind of hands off by the other party. I firmly believe that we have seen a lot of turnover in the director and deputy director position … The last thing that I want to see is a lot of turnover … because the director and deputy director keep us four out of trouble when they are doing their job,” Fisher said.

“I would definitely want you as Republicans on the board to be just as involved in this hire as we are,” he added.

In other business, the board:

  • Heard comments from Long on his opportunity to serve on the board. “It is a great honor to be appointed to the Board of Elections. I am looking forward to working with everyone here,” he said. “I am quite certain we will have very well run elections.”
  • Approved the contract with Lewis and Michael of Dayton to deploy the county’s electronic voting machines on Election Day, May 2. The board has agreed previously to contract with the company.
  • Conducted the media test of voting equipment, also for the May 2 election.Agreed to the participation of board and staff members in the state election officials summer conference in Columbus.