BOTKINS — The Shelby County Democrat Party will be host its annual Jefferson/Jackson Dinner, Thursday, April 26, at the Palazzo in Botkins.
Doors will open at 6 p.m. with a social time and a cash bar followed by the dinner and program at 6:30 p.m. There will be door prizes and a 50/50 raffle.
Dinner tickets are available for $25 per person by calling 937-726-0625, by 5 p.m., April 24.
This year’s featured speaker will be Danny O’Connor, who is a candidate for Congress in the 12th District. Also speaking will be Garrett Baldwin, the 17-year-old, Mechanicsburg high school student hoping to win election to the Ohio House of Representatives from the 85th District.
O’Connor is a Sidney native who graduated from Lehman Catholic High School in 2005. He earned a degree in political science from Wright State University in 2009, served in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in the Part of the Solution Legal Clinic in Bronx, New York, as a legal assistant and got his law degree from Syracuse University College of Law. At Wright State, he was president of the college Democrats. At Syracuse, he was a law alumni scholarship recipient, on the dean’s list, vice president of the student body and recipient of the General Electric Student Leadership Award.
After graduating from law school, O’Connor worked in the Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office in the juvenile division. In 2014, he and Amy Weis opened the law firm, Weis and O’Connor, where he remains a partner.
He was elected Franklin County recorder in 2016, where he manages a staff of 54 employees. As Franklin County recorder, O’Connor has helped turn the office around to make it more efficient for taxpayers and instituted reforms that helped homeowners, veterans and the homeless. O’Connor created the department’s first, paid, family-leave program for his employees.
In 2015, O’Connor and Weis contributed to the American Association of Matrimonial Lawyers amicus brief which asked the Supreme Court of the United States to rule in favor of marriage equality.
Baldwin, son of Betsy Baldwin, is running unopposed in the Democrat primary and will face the winner of the Republican primary for the Ohio House seat currently held by Nino Vitale, R-Urbana. The high school junior has been president of his class for two years and is vice president of the student council. He is active in the Champaign County Democrat Party and worked on the Hillary Clinton campaign. He participates in cheerleading and swimming.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4824.