GRANGER, Ind. — The St. Joseph County GOP brought in the new year with an historic event, swearing in dozens of newly elected Republican officials. The event hall was packed at Juday Creek Golf Course on New Year’s Eve as recently elected officials from township boards and trustees, to new Republican County Council Members and the Republican Clerk, all took their oaths of office. The event was a visual showcase of the beginning of Republican dominance in historically Democrat St. Joseph County.
“All of you worked hard to get to here.” County GOP Chairman, Tyler Gillean said. “These candidates are the greatest group of people I have ever been around.”
Gillean, who took over as the head of the GOP after the tragic death of former Chair Zach Potts (who was killed in a car crash with Congresswoman Jackie Walorski in August), dedicated the wins to Potts and late Congresswoman Jackie Walorski.
The standing-room-only crowd opened with applause after every candidate took their oath of office, starting with Township officials. The cheers grew louder as county elected officials were called to the front of the room, ending with the newest St. Joseph County Clerk of Circuit Court, Amy Rolfes.
County Council and Commissioner Republicans
During the event, three Republican County Council members took their oaths of office. All of them won their first elections, making it the first time in history that the Council is under Republican control.
County Commissioner Carl Baxmeyer was also sworn in after his first election win, helping the GOP maintain full control over the executive branch of county government. Baxmeyer was the incumbent in his seat after winning a Republican caucus following the resignation of former Commissioner Andy Kostielney earlier this year.
Joe Thomas — County Council District A
Amy Drake — County Council District B
Dan Schaetzle — County Council District C
Carl Baxmeyer — County Commissioner District 1
The GOP also celebrated two firsts for county-wide elected positions, swearing in the first Republicans to hold the County Assessor’s position and the County Clerk’s Office.
Mike Castellon — County Assessor
Amy Rolfes — County Clerk
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