CLAY TOWNSHIP — Dale Winner, who resigned as a trustee on Jan. 11, expressed interest in returning as a trustee, replacing Kyle Groh, who resigned his trustee seat on Jan. 29.
Winner made his interest known during a 4:30 p.m. Jan. 5 special meeting held by the trustees in an attempt to fill Groh’s vacant seat.
Winner was one of four township residents expressing interest in the vacant seat.
The other three residents are Lori Hartman, Chris Lightcap and Mark Haworth.
Winner told appointed trustees Angela Howell and Kevin Wrightsman he would like to return as a trustee after giving the matter much thought.
“I just recently stepped away to kind of reevaluate some things,” Winner said.
“When I learned that Kyle Groh resigned I rethought it after the reevaluation and I decided I would be willing to come back if you would entertain those possibilities,” Winner continued.
Winner said he has “served on the board of trustees on and off for numerous years.”
Winner began serving as a trustee when he replaced Robin Lehman in June of 2015.
Winner was elected to the remaining two years of Lehman’s term in November of 2015.
In 2017, Winner was defeated by Jeff Requarth, who served as trustee until he resigned in June of 2019 due to moving out of the township.
Winner was selected to replace Requarth in July of 2019.
Winner was re-elected as trustee in November of 2021.
“I served as chairman of the board for several years and enjoyed doing it. I enjoyed my time that I served the township,” Winner said.
Winner said he moved to Clay Township in 1996 when he became a teacher at Brookville High School, a position he held for 10 years.
Winner said he is currently serving as an administrator at the Miami Valley Career Technology Center.
Hartman noted she has served on the Clay Township zoning board the past six years.
A long-time township resident, Hartman said she lives on her family’s “Ohio Century” farm.
“I am a farmer. I own a business where I sell directly to the consumer from our farm that is located in Clay Township,” Hartman said.
Hartman indicated she has a background in municipal budgeting.
“I have worked with grants, both grant writing and grant recording,” Hartman said.
Hartman noted she has helped resolve problems experienced by other businesses.
Hartman also said she “does a lot of research to make sure I do things the way they are supposed to be done.”
“With the business that I have, one of the big things I’m concerned with is making sure I am doing it right,” Hartman said.
“That’s what I want to make sure is being done in the township,” Hartman continued.
Lightcap said he doesn’t have experience with township government.
“I don’t know how much experience the job needs or the job training, but I am a business owner in Clay Township,” Lightcap said.
Lightcap is the owner of Lightcap and Sons Concrete.
Lightcap said he retired as a Dayton firefighter 2½ years ago.
“I don’t know what that (being a firefighter) would have to do with administration, but I do know some insights of public work,” Lightcap said
“I try to run my business the best that I can and I would run the township in the same way,” Lightcap added.
Haworth said he was born and raised in Clay Township.
“I own and operate my own business of 24 years,” Haworth said.
Haworth is the owner and operator of Tiger Plumbing.
“I’m very familiar with the township offices and the township road, cemetery crew and the police department. All departments seem to run flawlessly,’ Haworth said.
Haworth said he was “saddened to read in the Register-Herald about the fallout of our township trustees.”
“When we as residents are at the ballot box, we are voting for strong upstanding leaders that will be trusted to make reasonable decisions for our township,” Haworth said.
“Unfortunately, our community has witnessed some of our leaders in the past few weeks just curl up in a ball and surrender their positions as leaders,” Haworth continued.
Haworth said “there is no second chance for someone who surrenders.”
“Operating a township is a business which requires sharp business-minded people that find solutions for all issues,” Haworth said.
“I built my business with three common keys which are honesty, integrity and common sense which has made my business very successful,” Haworth noted.
“You will find countless five-star reviews about my business with the Better Business Bureau and also Facebook, which I am very proud of,” Haworth continued.
“I am certainly qualified to take this position as Clay Township trustee,” Haworth said.
Howell said she and Wrightsman need some time to vet the four candidates before making a decision.
“I know that the community is very disturbed about what has happened because I’ve been getting emails and phone calls,” Howell said.
“We want to make the right decision. We don’t want to see anymore turnover. We want to be able to fill this seat and be able to move on with the community’s business,” Howell continued.
“I don’t want to rush into making a decision on something as important as this,” Wrightsman said.
“I will make a motion that we take the next two weeks to meet with these four individuals and schedule interviews and then come back together after that,’ Howell said.
Wrightsman seconded the motion.
The trustees have until Feb. 29 to select Groh’s replacement.
Reach Terry Baver at [email protected].