LORAIN – County Commissioner Ted Kalo announced his candidacy for the office of Lorain Municipal Clerk of Courts, Wednesday afternoon.
Kalo, who has served as county commissioner since being elected in 2004, hopes to replace the current clerk, Lori Mairorana, when she retires at the end of her term next year.
As commissioner, Kalo serves on the Justice and Public Safety Committee of the County Commissioners Association of Ohio and has worked on legislative issues related to indigent defense, funding for the courts and the effects of state and federal policy on our local justice system.
“I’m big into the organizational (aspects) – I like working on the budget stuff and chasing the revenues,” Kalo said. “I saw an opportunity to come back into the city of Lorain, which is my hometown, and give something back here.”
In a release, Kalo said he is an active member in the Lorain community, having served on the United Way Emergency Food, Shelter and Utilities Committee, the past president/board member of the Lorain Palace Civic Center and as a participant in the American Cancer Society Relay for Life. He currently serves as an executive board member of the Lorain County Chamber of Commerce and as a member of the Jim Popiel Scholarship Fund committee.
Kalo has also been a small business owner since 1996 as the owner of Ted’s Floor Coverings in Lorain.
Kalo believes he can take the skills he’s acquired as county commissioner and use them as Clerk of Courts.
“I have gained an understanding of the complexities, needs, capabilities and limitations of the justice system,” he said. “As clerk, I will use my experience as an elected official, small business owner and active community member to enhance the office and make it more efficient for our courts, police and community.”
Matt Lundy, a fellow county commissioner, said he believes clerk of courts is a logical step for Kalo.
“Ted has always been the person most engaged in issues dealing with the courts in the county,” Lundy said. “It seems like he has gravitated to that arena. It’s kind of a natural transition based on his interests with the courts and how he’s been the point person in those areas in county government.”
Lundy also said that if Kalo were elected as clerk, it would create a bit of a hole in the county.
“He certainly has always taken the job very seriously, and he definitely knows the budge now like the back of his had,” Lundy said. “He has that institutional knowledge, and you hate to lose that.”
If Kalo were to be elected to clerk of courts, he would need to resign from his seat as county commissioner, which will expire in January 2021.
Lorain County Democratic Party Chairman Anthony Giardini said he believes the unexpired term would be handled like any other open seat in which the county Democrats would select a replacement for the remainder of the term.
“We’ll keep an eye on it now and do some research on the law in this area,” Giardini said. “We’ll certainly be ready to deal with it in that eventuality.”
Lorain County Board of Elections Director Paul Adams said Kalo has not pulled petitions to run for Lorain Municipal Clerk of Courts yet, but he expects Kalo to do so in the next few days. Adams also said Jeff Bearer, who currently works for Maiorana, has pulled petitions and plans to run for the seat, as well.
Bearer and Kalo would face each other in the May Democratic primary.