Candidates for Montgomery County Commission include on the top row Republicans Doug Barry, Gary Leitzell and Bob Matthews. Democrats Carolyn Rice and Don Shaffer are pictured below. SUBMITTED

Barry wins GOP county commission primary; Rice takes Democratic race

Doug Barry squeezed out a victory over Gary Leitzell in the Republican county commission primary Tuesday.

Carolyn Rice, meanwhile, cruised to an easy win on the Democratic side, according to unofficial final results from the Montgomery County Board of Elections.

“We’re excited,” said Barry. “The volunteers and our team have worked hard over the last four months to get us in a position where we would be successful tonight.”

Barry collected 41 percent of the vote. Leitzell, a former Dayton mayor, received about 36 percent of the vote. The two were in a three-way primary with Bob Matthews, who finished with 23 percent.

Rice stayed steady with about 90 percent of the votes all night against Don Shaffer, according to the count.

“I’m pretty happy with the results,” Rice said from an election party Tuesday night. “I feel like we’re off to a great start. I’m ready for the next six months.”

Leitzell and Matthews, a former Miami Twp. trustee, both ran for the county seat before.

The three Republicans and two Democrats appeared on Tuesday’s ballot to fill the seat being vacated by Dan Foley, a Democrat, who is running for the Statehouse.

Rice is a Kettering resident and Montgomery County’s treasurer for 11 years. Shaffer is a former Clayton City council member and practicing chiropractor who now lives in Brookville.

Barry and Rice will face each other in November to see who will join the board with current county commissioners, Judy Dodge and Debbie Lieberman. The commission has not had a Republican member in more than a dozen years.