The campaign committee of former Oregon Councilman and current State Rep. Mike Sheehy unanimously voted to give his petition for election to city council this fall to Democrat Joshua M. Hughes.
Hughes, 37, is a partner in the law firm of D’Angelo & Hughes Co., L.P.A. of Toledo, where his practice is primarily focused on labor and employment law. Hughes was raised in East Toledo. He, wife Heather and children Ella and Evan moved to Oregon in 2007 and bought a house on Robindale, in the old Eastmoreland area, bound by Navarre and Starr avenues and Wheeling Street.
Sheehy had already formed a campaign committee and secured a petition to campaign for re-election before he was sworn in as state representative from the 46th House District in June to fill the vacated seat of former State Rep. Matt Szollosi. Sheehy’s appointment to the state house left his campaign committee holding a petition for election to council with no candidate to elect. His campaign committee then unanimously voted to give his petition to Hughes.
“I am very excited that Mr. Sheehy’s committee has offered me the chance to campaign for election to city council in his stead,” said Hughes. “In my practice, we help victims of wrongdoing and stand up for the rights and well-being of working men and women. I will strive to do the same on city council.”
Hughes said he had expressed an interest in pursuing Sheehy’s council seat soon after learning of the vacancy.
“I filled out an application, attached a resume and sent it in to the campaign committee. I went through an interview process, and learned last week that I was chosen,” he said.
Hughes has never before run for public office. So why is he interested?
“My wife and I have chosen to make Oregon our home for our family,” said Hughes. “We have a 7-year-old daughter and 5-year-old son. I would like to do whatever I can to make Oregon better. As a lawyer and litigator I've gained experience in situations such as dispute resolution to contract negotiation to mediation that have allowed me to develop skills in working with people that will translate well to city government.”
Hughes said there are issues he would like to focus on as a councilman.
“I don’t think Oregon’s broke, so I don’t think there is anything specific that needs to be fixed. But I think there are some things we can tweak,” said Hughes. “I think we can continue to strive to provide excellent public services while maintaining fiscal responsibility. I would like to continue to improve the infrastructure. The Safe Routes to School grants the city received to provide money for sidewalks is fantastic. I think we should continue to explore those options, with state funding assistance for public improvements. I’d also like to see what we can do to improve both the commercial and industrial aspects in Oregon.”
He also wants to address crime prevention.
“I’d like to see what I can do to crack down on vehicle break-ins. The Oregon Police Department does a fantastic job keeping citizens updated via Facebook. There just seems to be an awful lot of vehicle break-ins. Cars will be rummaged through if they are unlocked. If they’re locked, they will be broken into. Several cars in my neighborhood have had been broken into several times within the last year. We need to do something to rectify that.”
Sheehy said he was pleased by his committee’s vote for Hughes.
“I am thrilled that Joshua has accepted my committee’s petition. I know he will continue my commitment to being a passionate advocate for the working men and women of Oregon,” said Sheehy.
Szollosi said he was also happy Hughes got the nod.
“I can’t think of a better person to step up to fill Representative Sheehy’s spot on the ballot,” said Szollosi, who also served on Oregon council before he was elected to the Legislature. “Joshua’s knowledge of the law, and dedication to Oregon will put him in a great position to help the city.”
Hughes graduated from St. Francis de Sales High School, and earned his Bachelors and Juris Doctorate degrees from the University of Toledo.