Hempfield consultant announces GOP bid for Westmoreland County commissioner
A microbiologist who left a university teaching job last summer to open his own consulting business announced Monday he will be a Republican candidate for Westmoreland County commissioner.
Doug Chew, 48, of Hempfield said if elected he will donate a portion of his salary to help fund the county’s drug court program and will serve as a “conservative watchdog” on the board of commissioners.
Incumbent Republican Commissioner Charles Anderson announced last month he will retire at year’s end. Chew is the fourth Republican to join the race for a GOP nomination.
Anderson’s Chief of Staff Sean Kertes, retired executive John Ventre and computer systems administrator Paul Kosko all have announced they plan to run in the May 21 GOP primary.
Republicans, for the first time in about six decades, seized control of the board of commissioners in 2012, but lost the majority four years later to Democrats Ted Kopas and Gina Cerilli.
Chew criticized the current board’s fiscal policies and suggested a tax hike could be in the offing.
“The commissioners raised $1.7 million by charging an additional fee on our vehicle registrations in order to maintain 52 miles of roadways,” Chew said. “Yet despite our paying more, they have depleted our reserves, our drug court is woefully underfunded and our workforce is not meeting the needs of our region’s employers.”
Chew is a Hempfield Area High School graduate and holds a degree from the University of Pittsburgh, where he worked as a faculty member from 1992 until last summer. He taught molecular biology and biochemistry, wrote grants and negotiated contracts to fund research projects.
For six years, he served as an elected auditor in Hempfield and as the chairman for the District 5 Republican Committee in Hempfield.
Chew is married and has three sons.
Rich Cholodofsky is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact
Rich at 724-830-6293 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rich Cholodofsky is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Rich at 724-830-6293, email@example.com or via Twitter .