New elections director named for Montgomery County

The Montgomery County Board of Elections, on Friday, named Republican Jan Kelly as elections director effective July 8.

She will earn $100,000 a year. In the new position, she will be in charge of preparing and conducting all Primary, General and Special Elections; Processing, evaluating and reporting election results; filing and preserving all records and reports pertaining to voter registrations and elections; and, submitting the annual budget for the Board, among other duties.

Kelly has served as finance director for the board of elections since April 2012. Prior to that, she was a regional liaison for the Ohio Secretary of State. Kelly also worked for the board from 2005-06 as a registration supervisor, where she assisted in all aspects of elections, including training of poll workers.

Kelly unsuccessfully challenged Montgomery County Commission President Dan Foley for a seat on the county board in 2010.

Five candidates applied for the election’s director position. Hour-long interviews were held Monday.

Other candidates included: David Cooper of Cincinnati, a former poll worker division recruitment official for the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections; James S. Milliken of Jackson, Ohio, a regional liaison for Secretary of State Jon Husted; Dayton resident William Hibner III, who has worked at the Montgomery County Board of Elections since 2003, first as campaign finance manager and currently as an elections manager; and, David Landon, a Dayton attorney.

“We interviewed everyone who applied and went through an extensive interview process. Jan was our best candidate,” Board Member Greg Gantt.

Kelly replaces Betty Smith, who in May announced her plans to resign “to alleviate health concerns.” Smith was deputy director for more than six years and became director last March.

“There is no replacement for Betty Smith, but we have filled the position,” Board Member Rhine McLin said.

While Kelly takes on the job with a team of experienced staff, seven of eight key mangers are expected to retire over the next three years, including Deputy Director Steve Harsman.

Kelly was not available for comment Friday.