Fayette will need 2 row officers, 2 judges as incumbents step down
Fayette County voters this year will elect two row officers and two judges as the four incumbents retire.
The most recent to announce plans to retire is Robert Danko, who has been county treasurer for 24 years.
Danko, 81, was first elected in 1990. He said he ran only because the former treasurer, Nicholas Kornick, encouraged him to do so.
“Mr. Kornick kept telling me he wanted me to run,” said Danko, noting he was reluctant at first but eventually “threw my hat in” and ran. “I did, and I was very successful, pulling in a significant amount of the vote, which surprised a lot of people.”
Danko said he is thankful that voters re-elected him five times. He credits his success during his tenure to his five-member staff.
“Without my girls, I'd be nothing,” said Danko, who will leave office when his term expires at the end of the year.
“I really need to give someone else a chance to come in here,” Danko said. “I couldn't wait until I was 65 to retire, and here I am, at 81, still working.”
Danko said he plans to spend more time with his wife, Marsha, in retirement, along with focusing more on one of his hobbies, restoring antique cars.
Danko's chief deputy, Dianne Rossini, will retire at the end of the year, as well. She said she could have retired earlier but opted to stay until Danko left.
“He's very special,” Rossini said. “He's the best boss I ever worked for.”
Danko's successor will be elected to a four-year term.
Another longtime row officer, Lance Winterhalter, quit his job as prothonotary in June. He won re-election in 2011 and had only partially served out a four-year term when he left.
Winterhalter's successor will serve only two years to finish out the unexpired term, according to Larry Blosser, election bureau director.
Two openings for judges are up for election because Ralph Warman and Gerald Solomon retired.
Warman retired in July at age 68.
Solomon retired in December after reaching the mandatory retirement age of 70. He and a number of other judges from different counties have filed federal civil rights lawsuits challenging the mandatory retirement provision. The suit, along with another filed by judges from other counties in the same situation, is pending in U.S. District Court in Harrisburg.
Warman and Solomon are working part time as senior judges. Their successors will serve 10-year terms.
Blosser said prospective candidates for the row officer positions can begin to circulate nominating petitions on Feb. 19.
A number of attorneys have announced their candidacy for judge.
Their nominating petitions will be filed in Harrisburg, Blosser said.
Fred Lebder, chairman of the county's Democratic party, said he anticipates the row officer positions will draw numerous candidates for the spring primary.
He said the party has no plans to field any specific candidate.
Russ Rhodes, chairman of the county's Republican party, could not be reached for comment.
Liz Zemba is a reporter for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-601-2166 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pedestrian struck on East Crawford Avenue in Connellsville
- Uniontown man charged with rape
- Man shot in leg outside Uniontown apartment
- Fayette veterans to commemorate Pearl Harbor at Uniontown VFW
- Masontown police car vandalized
- Connellsville Canteen to host lecture on American home front during WWII
- Fayette County Courthouse setting for ‘Magic and Mistletoe’
- Former member takes reins of chorus
- Center at Penn State Fayette puts students on path to success
- HObo Model Railroad Club display back in Connellsville
- Owner challenges vacant designation in Connellsville