This is an editorial published February 23rd 2007 in the Dayton Daily News.
The 70th Ohio House District, now represented in Columbus by term-limited Rep. Kevin DeWine, includes Beavercreek, Fairborn and Xenia. And, sure enough, a member of each of those city councils is running for the Republican nomination in that Republican district.
However, of the five total entrants, the best choice is not now on any council. Jay Tieber, who did serve on Beavercreek's council for eight years until 2006, has remarkable credentials for the job.
A graduate of West Point and the Air Force Institute of Technology, a pilot in Vietnam, he has also been assistant deputy director and aerospace adviser for the Ohio Department of Development, executive director of the Ohio Science and Technology Council and manger of the Thomas Edison Program for the Development Department. And he's been a manager at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
He's had some degree of connection — or at least familiarity — with a lot of the projects in the Dayton region that are about economic development, from aviation heritage projects to the Dayton Area Graduate Studies Institute (a consortium of universities that fosters high-tech education and research).
But is he too old? Well, in 2006 he took a small-boat journey around the world with several other septuagenarians. The commute to Columbus is less daunting.
On the issues, he and the other candidates do not differ a great deal. So it comes down to the person.
None of the others can begin to offer Mr. Tieber's wide range of experience so relevant to serving in the Ohio legislature from western Greene County.
The 99-member Ohio House of Representatives is not highly esteemed for the quality of its membership. These days House seats are close to an entry-level elective position. Communities cannot expect somebody of Mr. Tieber's background to come along.
But if he's willing and able, give him the job.
As for the other candidates, the idea of making a run for state rep after serving on a small municipal council does have a certain logic. However, Jarrod Martin, 28, of the Beavercreek council, Bill Miller, 42, of Xenia's, Frank Cervone, 45, of Fairborn's, and Brian Lampton, of Beavercreek, who is active in the community, but not on the council, can be asked to wait for another day.
To the public, the situation is probably indecipherable, with so many candidates, none of whom is all that well-known. (Mr. Martin is a former star wrestler at Beavercreek High School, but that isn't exactly a celebrity.)
One complication is that three candidates are from Beavercreek. If voters break along geographical lines, Mr. Tieber has a problem.
But if, somehow, by Election Day, people know the lay of the land, Jay Tieber should emerge — and be off on another, if lesser, adventure.