Board hires deputy director


SIDNEY — A new deputy director has been hired for the Shelby County Board of Elections.

During a special meeting Monday morning, the board hired Collin Claywell, 24, of Vandalia, to replace Donnie Chupp who resigned earlier this month. Claywell’s first day on the job will be Wednesday, July 1, when he is sworn into office at 8 a.m.

Claywell will be paid $40,500 a year as the new deputy director.

Seven people applied for the job. One person was disqualified because they didn’t have the job requirements for the position. A second person withdrew from consideration because of personal reasons.

Board member Doug Pence said each candidate was asked the 15 same questions. After each interview was concluded, the board compared their scores, which were captured on one document. All candidates were ranked from the top score to the lowest score.

Prior to voting to hire Claywell, the board invited Claywell into an executive session to discuss the job proposal. After the executive session, Claywell accepted the job and the board hired in by a 4-0 vote.

“Collin was the most qualified,” said Chair James Kerg of the candidates interviewed.

Kerg said Claywell’s experience with the Montgomery County Board of Elections was the tipping point for the board’s decision to hire him.

“He has experience with voter registration and the voting system,” said Kerg. “All the people we interviewed, in their own unique way, were responsible and qualified for the job.”

Kerg declined to name the other candidates who were interviewed for the position.

“We don’t feel it’s proper to disclose their identifies,” said Kerg. “We want to protect them in their current employer situation.”

A 2017 graduate of Bowling Green State University, Claywell earned a major in Political Science (concentration in Public Administration) and minor in Communications. He was most recently employed as the regional field director for the Ohio Republican Party with experience in election operations and administration as a clerk at the Montgomery County (Dayton) Board of Elections.

“I previously interned for Congressman Bob Latta and Former State Representative Jim Buchy,” said Claywell.

He was born and raised in Union City, Darke County, and graduated from Mississinawa Valley in May 2014.

Claywell is required to move to Shelby County within 30 days of his hire date. He also met two required qualifications — is a registered Republican and passed a background check conducted by the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office.

“I want to build my career in the elections field,” said Claywell after he was hired. “I am looking forward to applying my skills and experience in elections to serve the people of Shelby County.”

The board also reviewed a proposal to keep poll workers and voters safe from COVID-19 on Election Day. Some of the items reviewed by board member Merrill Asher includes taking the temperature of poll workers and voters, control the number of voters in the polling place, one door to enter and one door to exit the polling location, sanitize tables, door handles, voting booths and chairs, wearing face masks and voters bringing their own black pens to the polling location.

The guidelines will be reviewed and adopted at the July 13 board meeting.

“Vote early by absentee ballot,” said Asher. “Send in your ballot so you’re not exposed.”

The board went into a second executive session to discuss compensation for a former employee. No action was taken.

The next meeting will be held July 13 at 10 a.m. at the board office.


By Melanie Speicher

[email protected]

Reach the writer at 937-538-4822

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