Monday, August 22, 2011

Montgomery County Candidates by Gender

Some time ago I looked at the history of women on the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners. To take a current snapshot of the candidates for county wide office, I looked at the websites of the Montgomery County Democrats ( and Bucks County Republicans (

In the county commissioner race each party runs two candidates, the three who get the greatest number of votes are elected. Only one of the current three commissioners is running for re-election. Incumbent Republican Bruce Castor is running with Lower Merion Township Supervisor Jenny Brown. The Democratic ticket is State Rep. Josh Shapiro and Whitemarsh Township Supervisor Leslie Richards.

Incumbent Republican District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman is running unopposed.

Diane Morgan, the incumbent Democratic Controller is running against Republican Stewart Greenleaf, Jr.

For Prothonotary incumbent Democrat Mark Levy is facing Republican Bill Donnelly.

Two women face off for Recorder of Deeds: incumbent Republican Nancy Becker and Democratic challenger Linda Hee.

In the race for Clerk of Courts, incumbent Democrat Ann Thornburg Weiss is running against Republican Moon Ahn.

Two men are running for coroner, incumbent Democrat Dr. Walter Hofman and Republican Dr. Gordon Clement.

Republican Sheriff Eileen Behr, who won the office in a special election was appointed by the governor and confirmed by the PA Senate shortly before winning a contested primary election in May of 2011, faces Democrat Will Holt, Jr. The previous sheriff died in office in February 2010. Alfred J. Ricci was acting sheriff from Feb, 2010 until April, 2011.

Current Register of Wills, Democrat D. Bruce Hanes is running against Republican challenger Patricia Mosesso.

Two men are running for treasurer. It is an open race, neither has the benefit of incumbency. Republican Chuck Wilson is up against Democrat Jason Salus.

Like the commissioner race, each party is fielding a man and woman for county Court of Common Pleas. None are incumbents. Democratic candidates are Richard Haaz and Cheryl Austin. Republicans are running Daniel Clifford and Maureen Coggins. Of the 20 judges listed on the county’s judicial website, five has first names that traditionally or frequently are used by women.

So, if you are keeping score, there will be a woman on the county Board of Commissioners; we just won’t know until November whether it will be Jenny Brown or Leslie Richards. The District Attorney’s office will be retained by Risa Vetri Ferman. The Recorder of Deeds will be a woman. The coroner, prothonotary and treasurer will be male. The races for Controller, Clerk of Courts, Register of Wills, and Sheriff each have one male and one female candidate.

The Court of Common Pleas could have two new male or two new female judges, or one of each.

This is a very diverse ballot, at least by gender, and the parties are to be commended for recruiting women to run for office.


suburban liberal said...

nice column but chief behr was appointed by the governor their was no special election

AboveAvgJane said...

Right you are and thanks for pointing it out. I got confused because she was confirmed by the senate shortly before she won the primary.

Anonymous said...

"So, if you are keeping score, there will be a woman on the county Board of Commissioners; we just won’t know until November whether it will be Jenny Brown or Leslie Richards. "

While Castor's election is a given, there is no guarantee that Richards AND Brown won't be serving on the board next year. Shapiro represents just 11% of Montgomery County in the legislature. Richards beat him in 41 of 62 municipalities in the Democratic Primary. He only secured the top spot in the D primary results because of 1600 Abington voters bullet voting for him.

AboveAvgJane said...

True, I am assuming, based on greater name recognition, that Castor and Shapiro will be elected, but it is possible that both women and one of the men will win.