Three new faces, one incumbent, in Monroeville council race
Only one incumbent will seek re-election for Monroeville council while three new faces will vie for two available seats.
All of the candidates are running as Democrats.
Eric Poach is running for re-election after being appointed to fill a vacancy when former Ward 2 Councilman Nick Gresock became mayor.
Steven T. Wolfram is running for Jim Johns’ current seat representing Ward 4. Johns will not run for re-election.
Dominic L. Russo Jr. and Bob Williams are vying for Steve Duncan’s current seat representing Ward 6.
Poach, 60, said his time on council has been “an amazing thing.”
“First and foremost, I want to continue to support public safety and maintain our infrastructure,” he said.
Poach works for UPMC as an emergency preparedness training coordinator and holds degrees from West Virginia University in sports medicine and political science. He also has a master’s degree in public policy from the University of Pittsburgh.
He lives in Monroeville with his wife, Tracey, and together they have two children.
Russo, 67, said he wants to serve on council to address questions residents have about the new fee established under Monroeville’s Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System, or MS4.
“With any new fee or ordinance, you’re not going to please everybody, but there are more people up in arms about this than (council) realizes,” Russo said.
Russo, who serves on the municipality’s planning commission, wants to work with officials to make the municipality a place people want to live and work.
He holds an associate’s degree in mechanical engineering from Penn State University and lives with his wife, Patricia, in Monroeville. Together, they raised four children who all graduated from Gateway High School.
Williams, 75, said his platform is simple: He will return phone calls and follow up on issues for residents in Ward 6.
“I just have a desire to serve the residents,” Williams said. “I’ll work to keep our services, like 911, EMS, trash collection, snow removal and our summer parks program, up and running.”
Williams served on Monroeville’s planning commission until 2017 after being on the board for 15 years. He was the board’s chairman for many of those years, he said.
He hopes to keep property taxes under control and wants to work with the school board to make sure it doesn’t keep raising taxes for its residents.
“I’m not real happy on why they raised the taxes. They’ll have to address that. But if we can work them, I’d be more than happy to do that,” Williams said.
Williams, a Gateway High School graduate, lives in Monroeville with his wife, Renee.
Wolfram, 63, a former mail carrier for the U.S. Postal Service, said he has no experience in politics.
“But for 15 years on my (Monroeville) route, I heard everybody complain. ‘Why don’t they do this or that?’ So they asked me if I would ever run (for office). And I started thinking about it,” Wolfram said.
Before his 32-year career with the post office, he served in the military as a medic. He was medically discharged after being injured.
“I just hope maybe I’ll be able to help people out. I’m on a personal level with these people,” he said.
Wolfram has a daughter and grandchild.
Dillon Carr is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Dillon at 412-871-2325, [email protected] or via Twitter .