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League of Women Voters of Lehigh County to sponsor ‘Running for Local Office Workshop’

The League of Women Voters of Lehigh County will sponsor a Zoom workshop to assist those intending to run for local office 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Jan. 30.

According to 2015 attendee and a member of this year’s panel discussion Lehigh County Commissioner at Large Dan Hartzell, “[the workshop] … covered all the bases … every aspect of campaigning imaginable. It was well worth it.”

The brain child of retiring event organizer Ken Mohr, this biannual, non-partisan event has prepared candidates from all political affiliations to run for office since 2000. To compliment the workshop, Mohr has been instrumental in the development of a workbook that is available to participants. He states, “[The workbook provides a] full menu of how to run for public office.” This year, Mohr, who has over 26 years of county government service, will make the keynote presentation, “Prepare Yourself to be a Candidate.”

As explained by Mary Erdman, League of Women Voters of Lehigh County incoming president, those committing to run for office must complete a multitude of tasks from collecting signatures to organizing a campaign staff. To guide them through the process, workshop participants will receive practical advice from The Morning Call’s former Senior Content Editor for Politics and Political Issues Peter J. Leffler on how to work with the press and Chief Clerk of Lehigh County Board of Elections Tim Benyo on the proper completion and filing of the required paperwork.

Glenn Eckhart and Ed Hozza, Lehigh County Republican and Democratic Party chairpersons respectively, will discuss how candidates may best connect to their parties.

As well as subject focused speakers, the morning’s activities will include a panel discussion. The panel is composed of two Democrats and two Republicans who currently hold various local offices but who are not running in the upcoming elections.

Democrats Candida Affa, Allentown City Council member and Hartzell will join Republicans Jeffrey Dimmig, Southern Lehigh School Board member and Upper Macungie Township Supervisor Kathy Rader as panel members.

Erdman will facilitate the discussion which will be followed by a question-and-answer session.

Whether a candidate has been planning to run for office since the last election or throws his hat into the ring at the last minute, attending the League of Women Voters of Lehigh County’s “Running for Local Office Workshop” is a great way to begin a campaign.

“We feel really good about helping candidates to be good candidates,” Erdman said.

For more information or to register for this virtual event, visit LWVLehighCounty.org and click first on “Upcoming Events” and then on “Running for Office Workshop.”

Interested parties may also make contact using email@lwvlehighcounty.org or by calling 610-432-1456.

CONTRIBUTED PHOTOS Ken Mohr is the event originator and this year's keynote speaker for the “Running for Local Office Workshop” Jan. 30.
League of Women Voters of Lehigh County incoming President Mary Erdman is an organizer in training for the workshop.