WEST ALEXANDRIA — The Preble County Republican Central Committee voted to appoint longtime party chair David Haber to the open seat on the Preble County Board of Commissioners during their special public meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 26.
The seat was vacated by former Commissioner Rodney Creech, who was elected as a state representative to Ohio House District 43 in November of 2020, two years into his four-year term.
The evening meeting was held in the auditorium of Twin Valley Community Local Schools.
“I really appreciate the central committee and all the public who showed up here,” Haber said after receiving the nod to replace Creech and being sworn in by Preble County Probate Judge Jenifer Overmyer. “That was really great. It shows Preble County does have a voice. I just appreciate all the support I got, and I’ve had, and look forward to making Preble County better and better — someplace to come home to.”
Haber has been a member of Preble County’s Republican Central Committee for over 20 years and is finishing his second term as executive chair.
He agreed his background is one possible reason for the decision the committee made in selecting him.
“Everybody knows me, how I work and how I put things together,” he said. “Between running the party and headquarters and getting signs out to everybody and getting people down here [to Preble County] to speak, it probably helped me. But they know who I am, and they know what I stand for.”
Haber said he had been approached about running last year, but as party chair, he knew there was a big election coming up and he didn’t want to interfere with that.
“I said, my number one objective right now is to get Republicans elected. We had big races in the state — we lost one judge statewide, but we got everybody elected in the county.”
His number one goal was to “get Rodney elected first.”
After Creech was elected, Haber said he and his wife sat down and discussed it, and the decision to throw his name in the ring for the seat was made.
Haber will now resign from a seat he holds on the Preble County Board of Elections, but can continue with his role as chairman of the Preble County Republican Party.
His goal is to finish the remaining two years of the commissioner’s term he was selected for and then run in the election in 2022 to continue in the position.
“I’m 110 percent in on everything I do,” he added. “And they know that.”
What does he want for Preble County?
“I want Preble County to be a county where everybody loves to grow up and come back home to at some time,” he said. “And whether it’s they retire here or they come back and work here, we want people to come back to Preble County to stay.”
Other Preble Countians vying for the seat included Joe Renner, Robert Wood, Harold Niehaus, Rusty Anderson, and former Preble County Commissioners Jane Marshall, Chris Day and Denise Robertson.
The candidates were given three minutes to speak, and the committee members could then ask them questions. The committee made its selection via voice vote.
Haber received 20 votes, followed by Renner with four, Niehaus and Robertson with two and Day with one.
Haber’s first day on the job was Wednesday, Jan. 27.
Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4061 or follow on Twitter @emowenjr