Longtime Penn Township Trustee Jeff Duncan doesn’t have an agenda and he doesn’t plan to make waves. But he’d like to make sure the county continues on its current path and that’s why he says he’s running for Highland County commissioner.
“I always kind of had an interest in local government,” the 59-year-old Samantha resident said Wednesday. “I’ve been a township trustee for 20 years, have friends in local government, and it’s just something I’ve always been interested in.”
Duncan will run as a Republican for the seat currently held by Jeremy Shaffer, who has announced he will not seek re-election when his term expires at the end of this year. Dave Gingerich, another Republican candidate, announced last month that he will also seek Shaffer’s seat.
A graduate of Fairfield High School in Leesburg, Duncan said he believes his experience in farming, business and government leadership equip him to effectively serve the citizens as a Highland County commissioner.
Duncan said he joined his parents, Joe and Pat Duncan, in operating the family’s farm near Leesburg 40 years ago. He serves of the board of supervisors for the county’s soil and water conservation district, is president of the ownership group at Five Points Implement Company, and is a member of the Highland County Republican Central Committee and Clinton-Highland Joint Fire District Board.
“I don’t have an agenda coming in,” Duncan said. “I think the present commissioners have done a pretty good job of being fiscally responsible and handling some tough decisions. I just hope to continue that trend.”
Duncan said he’s been interested serving Highland County as a commissioner for some time, and at one point interviewed for a commissioner’s seat vacated in mid term. That seat was awarded to Mike Rector, but Duncan said he never lost his interest. He said some friends encouraged him to run this year and that after talking it over with his family, he has their support.
Duncan and his wife, Lydia, have been married for 34 years and have three children, Grace (Nathan) Miller, Elizabeth (Jason) McNeal and Scott (Sarah) Duncan. They are members of the Leesburg United Methodist Church where he serves on the church leadership team.
“I just hope everyone will support me, and I’ll do my best to do a good job for the people of Highland County,” Duncan said.