GREENWOOD TWP- Greenwood voters signaled a strong desire for change on Tuesday, ousting longtime town clerk Ellen Trancheff by a two-to-one margin, and granting frequent dissenter and former supervisor, Carmen DeLuca, a seat back at the supervisor’s table.
Turnout was high with an unofficial vote count of 395, up about 14 percent from the previous two years, which also saw contested elections.
Sue Drobac, a first-time candidate who challenged Trancheff for the clerk’s post, garnered 240 votes to Trancheff’s 131. Trancheff, who had run unopposed for years, faced her first challenge in 2014, but easily defended her seat. But Trancheff’s request for a $12,000 retroactive salary increase last summer proved highly controversial and was likely on voters’ minds as they went to the polls.
Drobac, while new to the clerk’s role, has spent her career in bookkeeping and accounting, as well as customer service. She recently retired after working full-time at Floor to Ceiling for 28 years. She has been a regular audience member at township board meetings for the last four years.
Trancheff was first elected as clerk in 1985, and has also served as a fire department member and department secretary (now administrative assistant), a role she will continue to fill, as well as the controversial 911-coordinator position, to assign new fire numbers. She is also a First Responder.
In 2014, Carmen DeLuca lost reelection in a three-way race where votes were split between himself, John Bassing, and winner Rick Worringer (whose term will expire in 2017).
This year, DeLuca, with 240 votes, easily outpolled former supervisor Don Doroff, who tallied 134 votes, and former supervisor Byron Beihoffer, with 17 votes. Doroff lost to John Bassing 188-151 in last year’s election. DeLuca is filling the seat held by former Chair Kirsten Reichel, who opted not to seek reelection.
Election results were not announced until the end of the annual meeting, which stretched from 8:15 until 11:30 p.m.