Races Set for May Primary

The races are set for May’s primary elections. In Starke County, one hotly-contested office is county clerk. Current auditor Kay Chaffins is challenging incumbent Vicki Cooley for the Democratic party nomination. The winner would presumably face Republican Bernadette Welter-Manuel in November’s general election.

Meanwhile, Democrats Kasey Clark and Rachel Oesterreich are vying to replace Chaffins as auditor. Prosecutor Nick Bourff faces a Democratic primary challenge from Richard Ballard, with the winner expected to face Leslie Baker in November.

Three candidates are also running for District 2 County Council Member: Democrats Dale Conley and Chuck Estok, and Republican Howard A. Bailey Jr. District 1 County Council Member Brad Hazelton faces a Democratic primary challenge from Karl Swihart.

Several candidates have expressed interest in Railroad Township government. Incumbent Trustee Mandy Thomason faces a Republican primary challenge from Deb Wappel. The winner will presumably square off against former trustee Democrat Roger Chaffins in November. Meanwhile, four Democrats and three Republicans have filed to run for the three Railroad Township Board seats. In California Township, Trustee Judy Ahlenius faces a Democratic primary challenge from Evelyn Trusty.

Pulaski County also has its share of contested races. Republicans Tim Murray and Mary Welker are running for Circuit Court Judge. Coroner John Behny faces a Republican primary challenge from Alan Mitchell. District 3 County Commissioner Mike McClure will face Tyler Campbell in May’s Republican primary.

Pulaski County’s most hotly-contested race is for the District 3 County Council seat. Incumbent Democrat Linda Powers will face Jessye Gilley in the May primary, with the winner expected to face Republican Brian Young in November’s general election.

The Winamac and Francesville town council races have each attracted three candidates for the available seats.


Candidate Filings As of February 9 Filing Deadline:

Starke County

Assessor: Michelle Snowdon (D)

Auditor: Kasey Bula Clark (D), Rachel Milner Oesterreich (D)

Clerk: Katherine (Kay) Dolezal Chaffins (D), Vicki Cooley (D), Bernadette Welter-Manuel (R)

Coroner: Dannie Ray Hoffer Jr. (D), Jack E. Rosa (R)

Prosecutor: Leslie A. Baker (R), Richard (Dick) Ballard (D), Nicholas Allen Bourff (D)

Recorder: Rebekah Sponaugle Wagner (D)

Sheriff: Thomas Decola (R), Bill Dulin (D)

Commissioner District 2: Don Binkley (D), Bryan Harold Cavender (R)

County Council District 1: Bradley J. Hazelton (D), Karl Swihart (D)

County Council District 2: Howard A. Bailey Jr. (R), Dale Conley (D), Chuck Estok (D)

County Council District 3: David Pearman (R)

County Council District 4: Karen Tibbs (D)

California Township Trustee: Judy Ahlenius (D), Evelyn Trusty (D)

California Township Board Member: Michele Albon (R), Richard Anderson (R), Matthew McGowen Sr. (R)

Center Township Trustee: Julie Manns (D)

Center Township Board Member: Steve A. Berndt (D), Ben Warren (D)

Davis Township Trustee: Robin Latimer (D)

Davis Township Board Member: Rebecca Ferch (D), Robert Ferch (R), Rebecca (Becky) Pflugshaupt-Davis (R)

Jackson Township Trustee: Robert Schmidt (D)

Jackson Township Board Member: Michelle R. Hounshell (R), Perry Thompson Jr (R)

North Bend Township Trustee: Rutherford Byron Walters (R)

North Bend Township Board Member: Sam Bailey (R), 1. Richard Wieczorek Sr. (D)

Oregon Township Trustee: Mark Allen (D)

Oregon Township Board Member: Corey Louzon (D), Carole Noble (D), Joseph I Reed Jr. (R)

Railroad Township Trustee: Roger Chaffins Sr. (D), Mandy Thomason (R), Debra Wappel (R)

Railroad Township Board Member: Bart D. Egolf (R), Joe Krzyzanowski (D), Mike Lawecki (R), Deborah (Debbie) Pavloff (R), Clayton (Clay) Redlin (D), John Scott Roy (D), Steven Watson (D)

Washington Township Trustee: Cathy Ewing Benko (D)

Washington Township Board Member: Kimberly Temple (R)

Wayne Township Trustee: Shirley A. Kots (D)

Wayne Township Board Member: Joe Griffo (D)

California 2 Democrat Precinct Committeeman: Shirley Fields

Center 1 Democrat Precinct Committeeman and State Convention Delegate: Jeffery J. Houston

Center 1 Democrat Precinct Committeeman: Rick Chambers

Center 1 Convention Delegate “At-Large”: Michaelene J. Houston (D)

Center 2 Democrat Precinct Committeeman: Linda D. Berndt

Center 3 Democrat Precinct Committeeman and State Convention Delegate: Jeff V. Berg

Center 5 Democrat Precinct Committeeman and State Convention Delegate: Kenneth Wallace

Railroad Township Democrat Precinct Committeeman: August (Gus) Eckert II

Washington 1 Democrat Precinct Committeeman: Robert Olejniczac Jr.

Washington 2 Convention Delegate “At-Large”: Bernadette Welter-Manuel (R)

Wayne 1 Democrat Precinct Committeeman: Isaiah Collins

Wayne 2 Convention Delegate “At Large”: Brenda Stanojevic

Wayne 4 Convention Delegate “At Large”: Christopher Lee (R)

Wayne 4 Democrat Precinct Committeeman: Bill Crase Jr.

Pulaski County

Assessor: Lorena H. (Holly) VanDerAa (R)

Clerk: Christina L. Hoffa (R)

Coroner: John Behny (R), Alan S. Mitchell (R)

Prosecutor: Daniel P. Murphy (R)

Sheriff: Jeffery K. Richwine (R)

Surveyor: Jenny Weaver-Keller (D)

Circuit Court Judge: Timothy J. Murray (R), Mary C. Welker (R)

Superior Court Judge: Crystal A. Brucker Kocher (R)

Commissioner District 3: Tyler Campbell (R), John Michael “Mike” McClure (R)

County Council District 2: Ronald “Rudy” Desabatine (R), Douglas Roth (R)

County Council District 3: Jessye Gilley (D), Linda Powers (D), Brian Young (R)

Francesville Town Clerk: Cathy Lynn Elston (R)

Francesville Town Council: Pamela G. Antrim (R), Lynn Johns (R), Rosa M. Wuethrich (R)

Winamac Town Council: Alvin R. Parish (R), Dave Schambers (D), Dan Vanaman (R)

Cass Township Trustee: Christopher Hudson (D)

Harrison Township Trustee: Betty Stinemetz (R)

Harrison Township Board: Christopher A. Graves (R), Alice L. Gudas (R)

Indian Creek Township Board: David Weaver (D)

Jefferson Township Trustee: Betty L. Kruger (R)

Jefferson Township Board: Roscoe “Bud” Cummins (R), Carl G. Kopka (D), Steven Sommers (D)

Monroe Township Trustee: Michelle Schmicker (R)

Monroe Township Board: Jeremy L. Beckner (R), Timothy F. Hoffa Jr. (R), Marcia Link (D)

Rich Grove Township Trustee: Deloris Locke (R)

Salem Township Trustee: Kay Beasey (R)

Salem Township Board: Maurice Kopka (D), Gregory C. Stone (R), Charles R. Yeoman (R)

Tippecanoe Township Trustee: Martie White (D)

Tippecanoe Township Board: Tedmund R. Bauer (R), William E. Bauer (Bill) (D), Kelli Denton (D)

VanBuren Township Trustee: Lenora K. Hoover (R)

VanBuren Township Board: David W. Bailey (R), Kathleen (Kathi) Thompson (D), Tom Wallace (R)

White Post Township Trustee: Karen S. Wagner (R)

White Post Township Board: Richard Lee Brick (R), Patricia L. Tiede (R),

State Convention Delegate: Doug Gutwein (R), Emily Hizer (R), Daniel P. Murphy (R), Brian Young (R)