Here's a list of the candidates for Washington County commissioner and their responses to questions posed by the Post-Gazette. The names appear in the same order as they will on the May 17 primary ballot.
Each party will select two candidates, who will vie for three open seats in the Nov. 8 general election.
The commissioner term is four years at a $74,160 annual salary; the chairman makes $75,160.
HOME: Buffalo Township
FAMILY: Married; four grown children, ages 38 to 31; two grandchildren
EDUCATION: Bachelor's degree, California University of Pennsylvania; served two years in the United States Marine Corps
BACKGROUND: Active in various community groups, projects and veterans issues; former U.S. Marine, Pennsylvania State Trooper, sheriff and current Washington County commissioner
WHAT MADE YOU RUN? "I was born, raised, worked and educated in Washington County. Other than the years I served in the Marines, I never left the county. I feel that I understand the issues and what is important to the people in Washington County and can continue to lead and make a difference."
WHY VOTE FOR YOU? "Washington County is growing quickly. We must continue to keep taxes low, continue job creation and take care of our environment, while keeping our country charm. Working together to meet these goals is of utmost importance."
JOHN M. PETRISEK
FAMILY: Married; three children ages 10 to 5
EDUCATION: Bachelor's degree, Washington and Jefferson College; law degree, Ohio Northern University, 1995
BACKGROUND: Fifteen years practicing law; 14 years as a municipal solicitor; 12 years as a member of the Bentworth school board, with several years as board president
WHAT MADE YOU RUN? "I believe my professional experience with oil and gas law and tax assessment issues, the two biggest issues facing the county, makes me the best candidate."
WHY VOTE FOR YOU? "I am a new face for county government with the perfect combination of professional, business and government experience to lead the county for the next 4 years."
WAYNE E. WATSON
FAMILY: Married; two children, ages 34 and 28
EDUCATION: Bachelor's degree, Clarion University of Pennsylvania
BACKGROUND: Representative with United Food and Commercial Workers Local 23; president of the Washington-Greene Central Labor Council AFL-CIO; Washington County Democratic committeeman; board member of the Greater Washington County Food Bank; board member of UFCW (food workers) Local 23 Credit Union; volunteer for various political campaigns, charities and organizations in Washington County
WHAT MADE YOU RUN? "After 30 years of helping people as a union representative, I still have the desire to try to improve the quality of life for all residents of Washington County."
WHY VOTE FOR YOU? "I am not a career politician. My campaign is not financed by wealthy individuals, businesses or industries. My first and only obligation is to Washington County residents. I have everyday life experiences which will serve the county."
RANDY J. BARLI
HOME: Coal Center
EDUCATION: Associate degree, Penn State University
BACKGROUND: Candidate, state house 2004-2010; candidate, Washington County commissioner, 2003, 2007 and 2011; Democratic committeeman, elected 2003-2014; Coal Center council member, 1983-1989 and 2000-2002; federal project manager for Dynatran; member, United Mine Workers of America Local 1557, UMWA Local 1248 District 2, and UMWA Local 1648 District 31; worked as electrical contractor (licensed and insured) and in family/personal business from 1958-2001; forced retirement 2001
WHAT MADE YOU RUN? "No one seems concerned as to the state of our commonwealth nor country. Those who know how to put in a day's work need to get involved: register, vote and run for office."
WHY VOTE FOR YOU? "The goal is economic recovery across all class structures and to be a full-time public servant 24/7/365."
CAMPAIGN: www.smartvoter.org/2010/05/18/pa/state/vote/barli_r/ ; 724-938-8202
HOME: North Strabane
FAMILY: Married; two children, ages 12 and 10
EDUCATION: Business administration, Penn State University
BACKGROUND: North Strabane supervisor for eight years -- served as vice chairman five years and chairman for two years; 18 years of sales and management experience
WHAT MADE YOU RUN? "I have been called to serve people, whether that is working in my church with the mission and stewardship committee, distributing food at the Canonsburg Food Pantry or serving the people of North Strabane as a supervisor. The path I walk is to serve others."
WHY VOTE FOR YOU? "I have invested the time to insure North Strabane is a model community not only in the county but also the commonwealth. I will continue that dedication and vision as Washington County commissioner."
CAMPAIGN: Committee to Elect Greg Sulc (Facebook); 724-413-9439
FAMILY: Married; four children ages 42 to 35
EDUCATION: Two years at Indiana University of Pennsylvania
BACKGROUND: Thirty-two years as manager at AT&T; 12 years as owner of Shober Homes Inc., a residential home builder; 12 years as Chartiers-Houston school director with eight years as board president; 16 years as Chartiers supervisor; volunteer, officer and coach with youth sports programs; township parks and recreation board; president of Washington County Association of Township Officials; chairman of finance committee of Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors; chairman of Canonsburg Elks Trustees; elder in Houston Presbyterian Church
WHAT MADE YOU RUN? "I am proud of Washington County and with my experience, record and my desire to work for the people, I would like to make the county the best it can be for our children's future."
WHY VOTE FOR YOU? "If you want a commissioner who has the business experience and a record of accomplishment in the community to be your voice and servant for a better future, I am your candidate."
CAMPAIGN: www.shober2011.org; 724-503-4664
HOME: Washington, Pa.
EDUCATION: Harrisburg Area Community College Fire Academy firefighter I, hazardous materials technician; Community College of Allegheny County/Department. of Health emergency medical technician; Political Training Academy, Baltimore
BACKGROUND: Washington City Council public safety director; 18 years as labor representative (International Association of Firefighters Local 2218); municipal representative to Local Share Account Committee; chairman of City of Washington Bicentennial Committee; board of directors of Citizens Library
WHAT MADE YOU RUN? "With the retirement of Commission co-chairman J. Bracken Burns I feel that the county needs a strong leader with the vision and ability to lead the county and maintain a positive quality of life."
WHY VOTE FOR YOU? "I have a long record of dedicated public service. During my time on city council I was instrumental in helping bring the city back from the brink of bankruptcy by cutting costs and sharing services with neighboring municipalities."
CAMPAIGN: www.manning2011.com; 724-228-4667
FAMILY: Married; three children ages 25 to 19
EDUCATION: Master's degree, University of North Carolina; bachelor's degree, Boston University
BACKGROUND: "I'm a business leader involved in the community and deeply committed to Washington County's success. I have run complex organizations and am the only candidate with a business degree and executive experience. These matter significantly when you are leading a large organization like county government."
WHAT MADE YOU RUN? "I know how to get things done. I am not a politician. I don't want to talk things to death. I want action. County government needs new leaders and new ideas. Our county is changing rapidly and needs a leader with a servant's heart and a dynamic vision for our future."
WHY VOTE FOR YOU? "The county needs someone who has actually run a large organization. It needs a leader with vision and who cares passionately about people. I am not afraid to make a hard decision and I consider the taxes you pay to be a sacred trust that I will guard jealously."
CAMPAIGN: www.billnorthrop.com; 724-554-3915
DIANA IREY VAUGHAN
HOME: Nottingham Township
FAMILY: Married; three children ages 21 to 17
EDUCATION: West Virginia Business College; classes at Fairmont State and California University of Pennsylvania
BACKGROUND: Serving fourth term as Washington County commissioner
WHAT MADE YOU RUN? "I am seeking another term to complete projects I am working on, which include completion of Southpointe II Industrial Park and Starpointe Industrial Park; improvement and expansion of Washington County Airport, including an aviation-related business park; development of a coordinated delivery system for veterans benefits, which includes a partnership with the Washington County courts for a Veterans Court; a diversionary treatment program coordinated by United Way."
WHY VOTE FOR YOU? "During my service, Washington County has enjoyed one of the lowest tax rates in the region along with job and population growth. I have a track record of financial discipline and responsive service."