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Zoeller advances to Nov. race against Nutter

March 7, 2012
By Nick Dutro - Staff Writer ( , The Advertiser-Tribune

A Tiffin business owner is the winner of the Republican nomination for a seat on the Seneca County Board of Commissioners.

According to unofficial results of Tuesday's primary election, Fred Zoeller received 5,171 votes, about 71 percent, for a county commissioner seat which begins Jan. 3, 2013.

"I'm just overwhelmed by the support of the friends, and family and people of Seneca County for this election," he said.

Article Photos

Fred Zoeller visits with Sue Stephens (left) and Jean Janson.

Zoeller commented many people have asked him if he was nervous about the election, to which he said his concerns are based on what may come after the results of November's contest.

"I'm nervous not about the upcoming election, but if I can make things happen (if elected). ... I think with my experience and background, that I can," he said.

Zoeller has run Laminate Technologies for 28 years, and oversees three plants in the United States. Today he focuses primarily on high-end finances and long-term direction. Zoeller said he will keep an office at LamTech for this purpose, but will not be involved in the day-to-day operations if he is elected to office.

During his campaign, Zoeller emphasized he intends to run the county as a business, and his plans to work closely with Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. for job development.

Running against Zoeller was Kevin Carrigan, who previously managed sales for Essex Group Inc. in Indiana. Carrigan received 2,097 votes, about 29 percent, according to unofficial results.

"Was I surprised? No," Carrigan said, adding his expressed views on issues involving the 1884 courthouse and the role of the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. were polarizing.

Carrigan congratulated Zoeller on his victory.

"Fred has a long road ahead of him, and I wish him the best of luck," he said.

Zoeller also thanked his opponent, saying he ran a fair campaign and had some good points.

Zoeller is to face Ben Nutter, current county commissioner president. In Tuesday's voting, 1,954 people cast votes for Nutter.

Wilma Klopp also has filed as an independent for the seat. A conflict may exist as she voted in the election already as a Republican. Her petitions, filed Monday, have not been validated by the Seneca County Board of Elections.



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