2 Republicans running in primary for Montgomery County commissioner

Jordan Wortham (left) and Rennes Bowers (right) are running in the May primary to compete for a Montgomery County Commission seat in November.

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Jordan Wortham (left) and Rennes Bowers (right) are running in the May primary to compete for a Montgomery County Commission seat in November.

Two former first responders hoping to become a Montgomery County commissioner are on the Republican primary ballot seeking to run against an incumbent Democrat this November.

Rennes Bowers, who worked for the Dayton Fire Department, and Jordan Wortham, who worked for the Dayton Police Department, both say they have the background necessary to help successfully lead the county government.

The primary election is set for May 3 and the two are running for a seat on the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners. There are three seats on the board, but only one seat is up for election in November. That seat is held by commissioner Carolyn Rice. She doesn’t have a primary opponent and will run in November against the winner of the Republican primary.

The board is responsible for managing a $937 million budget and has appropriating authority of numerous agencies and county offices. There are more than 500,000 residents in Montgomery County.

Jordan Wortham

Wortham served as a Dayton Police officer for seven years and said that background will help him connect and serve the people of Montgomery County.

“I am a fiscal conservative, former police officer, and businessman who is ready to fight for American prosperity and freedom,” Wortham said. “I worked the frontlines as a patrolman protecting the Constitution. I have a unique understanding of government efficiencies and inefficiencies. In business, I made tough decisions to improve profitability and job creation within American companies.”

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Jordan Wortham

Jordan Wortham

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Jordan Wortham

He said his priorities as commissioner will be business development, removing red tape and making government services more efficient.

“I’m not your typical politician, I’m blunt and I tell it like it is,” he said. “I battled in the street as a police officer and businessman for nearly a decade. I’m fearless and ready to battle the corruption and abuse of power within our government.”

Wortham was terminated as a Dayton Police Officer in 2019 after he was accused of making a false statement during an investigation into an off-duty interaction he had with two officers. He has appealed that termination.

He said he is proud of his record of being a Dayton Police Office and said he believes the employment issue does not negatively impact his electability.

“I think it helps it, people respect that I risked my life to serve my community,” Wortham said. “It shows how deeply committed I am to public service.

“My case review shows that I am here to make the police department better,” he said.

Wortham said not enough is being done to treat officers in the county who regularly experiences traumatic events. Neglecting law enforcement’s mental health can be dangerous, Wortham said, and as commissioner will focus on properly funding tools that address that issue.

Wortham previously ran for Dayton city commissioner.

Rennes Bowers

Bowers worked for the Dayton Fire Department for 30 years and has described himself as a Biblical conservative.

“I’ve concluded that Montgomery County needs commissioners with experience in crisis management and emergency management in which I have 30 years experience. And hands on ministry of solving people’s problems in which I have 47 years experience,” he said. “The challenges the county faces today of economic uncertainty and inflation leading to recession created by this Democratic Party administration places great demand on our public safety forces and our resources designed to help the needy. Leadership with experience is needed in this hour. I will provide it.”

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Rennes Bowers

Rennes Bowers

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Rennes Bowers

He said his top priorities if elected will be creating good jobs, controlling spending and creating a culture of accountability and transparency for children and human services. He said situations like the one Takoda Collins’ faced should never happen again.

“Children are our most precious and vulnerable responsibility. Make them a priority,” he said.

He said he is prepared to be a Montgomery County commissioner.

“One of the chief functions of county government is assisting the citizens through human services and a fair and equitable justice system,” he said. “I have hands-on, roll up your sleeves experience in these areas. I have 24 years experience in personnel management as a Lieutenant, Captain, and District Chief with the Dayton Fire Department. I know how and have been successful in developing an atmosphere of the buck stops here accountability, get the job done, no excuses, figure out solutions as we work together.”

Bowers ran for mayor of Dayton in November and loss to Jeffrey Mims.

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