A lawyer, massage therapist, retired police officer, and homemaker are among the new faces on Oregon City Council and the Oregon school board.
Voters on Tuesday decided to put newcomers Tim Zale and Joshua M. Hughes on Oregon Council. Zale, 57, received 12.30 percent of the vote, according to unofficial results from the Lucas County Board of Elections. An independent, Zale is a retired detective sergeant from the Oregon Police Division. He lives on Park Way West with his wife. They have three children.
Hughes, 37, received 12.27 percent of the vote. He is a partner and lawyer in the Toledo law firm of D’Angelo & Hughes Co., L.P.A.. A Democrat, Hughes lives on Robindale Avenue with his wife and two children.
Kathleen Pollauf was also elected to council after receiving 12.75 percent of the vote. Pollauf, 47, was appointed to council in 2011 to fill the seat of Clint Wasserman, who had resigned to take a job at the Lucas County prosecutor’s office. Pollauf briefly served out Wasserman’s unexpired term that year and did not run again for council until this year. Pollauf, of Corduroy Road, is a message therapist. An independent, Pollauf is married with two children.
Voters re-elected the following incumbents on council: Jerry Peach, who received 12.60 percent of the vote; Terry Reeves, 13.28 percent; James S. Seaman, 13.38 percent; and Dennis Walendzak, who was the top vote getter with 14.654 percent of the vote.
Walendzak, a Democrat, attributed his strong showing to the way he works with council and responds to the community since he was elected to council in 2009.
“In the last four years, I’ve proven that I’m a good council member. I work well with the other council members. I’m not out there for myself. I’m there for the betterment of the community,” said Walendzak, 42, of Grand Bay Drive. “I think people understand that.”
He said he looks forward to working with the new members of council.
“We have a good group of people who will work well with the administration in an effort to move the community forward in a positive direction,” he said.
Walendzak, as the top vote getter, will likely become the new council president.
“If the other council members feel that I would be the best person for council president, I would accept that,” he said.
Walendzak is vice president of Environmental Management Services. He and his wife have two children.
New on the Oregon school board will be Heather Miller, 42, of Spring Forest Drive. Miller, a Democrat, received 19.82 percent of the vote. A homemaker, she and her husband have four children.
Voters returned incumbents Carol Ann Molnar and Mike Csehi. Molnar, of Grisell Road, received 20.64 percent of the vote. An independent, Molnar, 70, is a retired teacher from the Oregon school district. She and her husband have one son.
Csehi, of Turnau Road, is director of Technology, Kateri Catholic Academy. A Democrat, Csehi was appointed to the board in 2012 to fill the seat vacated by the board’s president, Dick Gabel, who had resigned in June of that year. On Tuesday, Csehi was the top vote getter, garnering 23.12 percent of the ballots cast for school board.
Csehi, 62, attributes his strong support to “leveling the waters compared to the chaos of the past” on the board.
“I have a calm sense about me, and people notice that. I’ve been able to work with the controversy we’ve had,” said Csehi, a reference to frequent squabbles on the board between board member P.J. Kapfhammer and Gabel.
“My strengths are being able to work with people, and trying to solve problems,” added Csehi. “I have the knowledge and education. I’ve been in administration and the teaching profession for over 40 years now. I think people recognize that. You have to be able to negotiate situations. That’s why there are five members on the board. I think we’ve done a very good job. We may not always vote unanimously, but we always solve problems. Oregon is a great school district I’ve been associated with for a long time. We have a good think going.”
Csehi said he wasn’t sure he would run for election this year.
“I said to my wife, `If the community wants me they will ask me to run, and I will make the decision to run or not. I had a lot of prominent people in the community who had asked me to run again because they thought I had a very level head and thought the board had eliminated the controversy. I really felt good last night when I saw the results and thought, `Well, I guess I made the right choice because the community is behind me.”’
Csehi is married with two children.
Voters also backed a 0.5 mill operating levy for the James “Wes” Hancock Senior Center on Bay Shore Road in Oregon for current and expanded services. The levy will bring in $207,000 in annual revenue for the center, and cost the owner of a $100,000 home $17.50 per year in extra taxes.
The levy passed 54.73 percent to 45.27 percent, according to unofficial results from the Lucas County Board of Elections.
The money will help support current programs the center offers, such as Bingo, Euchre, Mahjong, Wii bowling, exercise fitness, line dancing, Bunco, body sculpting, commodities, belly dancing, rides to and from medical appointments and shopping. The revenue will also go toward an increase in the salaries of senior center employees, the purchase of a new van and the hiring of a new full-time administrative assistant.