Clerk of courts incumbent faces opposition


A Democrat is challenging the Republican incumbent in the race for Defiance County clerk of courts on Nov. 6.

Democrat Toni McBroom is facing Republican Amy Galbraith, who wants a second term following her election in 2008.

A long-time employee of ITT Industries from 1977-2009, McBroom became a paralegal in 2011, and is doing work for the Meekison Law Firm in Napoleon. She also has been a court-appointed special advocate since 2009.

Galbraith has spent nearly 20 years in Defiance County's legal system, having been a secretary in former Prosecutor Jeff Strausbaugh's office from 1993 until her election to clerk in 2008. She was also a secretary for Strausbaugh from 1992-93 before his election to prosecutor.

The winner on Nov. 6 will begin a four-year term in January and earn an annual salary of $50,829.

Profiles of each candidate follow:

Name: Toni McBroom

Age: 54

Address: 24893 Kammeyer Road

Education: Defiance High School graduate, 1976; Northwest State Community College graduate, 2011, associate of business degree in paralegal studies, 2011; many other training and leadership programs

Family: husband, Michael McBroom

Occupation: court-appointed special advocate (CASA) since June 2009; special project, Meekison Law Firm, paralegal, 2012.

Previous elected offices: Defiance County Tiffin Township A Democratic Party Central Committee, two terms

Party Affiliation: Democrat

Reasons for seeking office: My most important motivation for seeking the office of Defiance County clerk of courts is to serve the people of Defiance County to the highest standards of my ability. I have the qualifications and integrity needed for the clerk's position, and would like this opportunity to provide to the citizens of Defiance County a dedicated, trustworthy leader.

Qualifications for the position: I am a paralegal, so I understand law terminology and the importance of confidentiality and professionalism. Furthermore, I am a member of Ohio CASA/GAL Association, and while performing the duties of a court-appointed special advocate, I participate in the procedures of a courtroom and create court reports. In February 2012, I was part of an Ohio Citizens Review Panel that included CASAs, attorneys, service providers and court staff. I am a proven leader, currently serving as auxiliary president of the F.O.E. 372, member of the board of trustees of the Fort Defiance Humane Society, and retain memberships with both the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) and Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA). During my academic career, I was vice president of the Alpha Upsilon Chapter, Kappa Beta Delta Honor Society and a member of Phi Theta Kappa with a graduating 3.9 GPA. Prior to my scholastic achievements, I held many leadership positions with the IAMAW and ITT Industries. These include vice president of District Lodge 57, Local 956 second-shift chief union steward, LL recording secretary, trustee, communicator/educator, internal quality auditor and cross-training team leader. All of these positions require administrative capabilities. During the same time, I represented the IAMAW as a national executive board member of the Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW), where I served for over 10 years as co-chair for the young working women committee. As a union representative, I participated in many training seminars that taught me human resource policies, practices and how to perform in stressful situations. I work well with others, enjoy serving the community and possess excellent academic and leadership ability.

Top three goals: 1. Promote policies that create a positive environment. I appreciate a skilled staff that serves county residents and businesses while valuing and protecting our funds.

2. Rebuild citizen's trust in the clerk's office with an honest government by inspiring and encouraging all to work mutually for the betterment of our communities.

3. Provide the beneficial change of adding a human aspect in management by supplying leadership that will bring our communities together and never forgetting that the clerk's office is to serve the taxpayers of Defiance County.

Name: Amy Galbraith

Age: 45

Address: 14164 Singer Road

Education: Defiance High School graduate, 1985; attended Northwest State Community College

Family: husband, Scott; daughters, Ali and Madeline

Occupation: Defiance County clerk of courts

Previous elected offices: Defiance County clerk of courts since 2009

Party affiliation: Republican

Reason for seeking office: I have felt great honor for the citizens of Defiance County since I was first employed by the Defiance County prosecutor's office in 1992. In all of the years I have worked for Defiance County I have found great satisfaction and pride in our Defiance County government. I want to continue to give back to the citizens of Defiance County and give full representation to all of the citizens of Defiance County.

Qualifications: Over 20 years experience in the court legal system.

Top three goals: 1. Collections of court costs. We have signed a contract with the Ohio attorney general collection division to help us collect outstanding costs. The Ohio attorney general's main option will be to withhold state income tax refunds. 2. Fiscally sound office. Continue to make decisions to help the county stay fiscally sound. 3. Professional and courteous service. Continue to educate and help my employees grow so that they will provide the best services to the citizens of Defiance County.

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