Pam Haynam says she's running for Lucas County commissioner for maternal reasons.
The Republican wants her children - 21, 18, and 15 - to return to the county after college and find work, she said.
"What are the issues with the county commissioners?" Ms. Haynam asked. "There's three of them: jobs, jobs, and jobs."
Her motivations might be personal, but Ms. Haynam's focus on employment is universal among commissioner candidates.
Toledo Councilman George Sarantou, her Republican opponent in the May 2 primary election, said the county is in a "war of economic survival."
The jobless rate for the area is 7.4 percent, more than two percentage points higher than the national average.
That gap can be closed by lowering taxes and promoting cooperation between Toledo and neighboring communities, Ms. Haynam said.
One of the key differences between Mrs. Haynam and Mr. Sarantou's political bases is location.
A Sylvania resident, Ms. Haynam represents a demographic missing from the county's three-person board of commissioners: suburbanites.
Many of the 75 people at the Sylvania Country Club last night for her official campaign launch said a suburban perspective would help county government.
"We need a little more diversity of opinion," Sylvania Councilman Mark Bula said.
Ms. Haynam, a business consultant, is no political novice. She has served on the Sylvania school board since 1997.
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