New commissioner candidates emerge
June 12, 2008 · Updated 9:44 AM
One day before the filing deadline two additional candidates have announced the intention to run for the soon to be vacant North Kitsap Commissioner position.
Lynn Nordby, 58, said this week that he had applied for the vacancy with the Kitsap County Democrats Central Committee. And Poulsbo resident James Weaver, who works as a senior planner for the Kitsap County Department of Community Development, has also announced his candidacy.
Nordby served as city administrator from 1991 to 2003, when he joined MuniFinancial, a consulting service. That company recently dissolved, so Nordby decided to seek the seat being vacated by Chris Endresen.
Nordby said that his relative youth and experience would make him an effective commissioner.
In a statement, Weaver said that his previous public service experience in Kitsap, King County, and in San Diego has taught the methods to balance difficult choices and to search out a solution based approach to resolving conflict.
In addition to Nordby and Weaver the declared candidates are: Martha and Mary's Director of Fund Development Robert Gelder, County Spokesman Clarence Moriwaki, Planning Commissioner Tom Nevins, County Treasurer Barbara Stephenson, Poulsbo City Counselor Ed Stern and tax activist Chris Van Dyk.
Nordby, Moriwaki and Van Dyk are from Bainbridge Island.
A candidate from Bainbridge Island may have a more difficult time in the rest of the county, Nordby said. But there is no reason that a candidate from Bainbridge would be any less viable than someone from Poulsbo or Hansville. Added Bill Mahan, who was South Kitsap Commissioner from 1969 to 1989 there have been plenty of opportunities, but there has never been anyone from Bainbridge who was really interested.
County sources say that no commissioner from Bainbridge Island has served since the 1950s.
Nordby called himself progressive and pragmatic but said he was prohibited by law from Democratic Party activities by the laws in effect when he was city administrator.
If appointed to the commissioners seat Nordby said he would be a good representative for both the party and the county. He said that the approximately 90 precinct committee officers (PCOs) represent the constituency he is trying to reach at this time.
Bainbridge Island City Counselor Debbie Vancil said she thought the next commissioner should have the ability to link the cities and the county. Vancil herself considered a run for Endresen's seat but said it was more of a party appointment.
This Monday, the partys executive committee will screen all applicants for residency and party affiliation. It is then up to the to select three names from the list. The three will then be presented to the remaining county commissioners, who will select one to complete Endresens term.
If the two cannot agree on a candidate then the selection will be made by Gov. Chris Gregoire. However, neither Republican South Kitsap Commissioner Jan Angel nor Democratic Central Kitsap Commissioner Josh Brown feels Gregoires intervention will be necessary. Angel has already said she finds Stephenson and Stern acceptable, and that she maintains an open mind about other candidates.Nordby said he has never had any interaction with Angel.
The executive committee meeting is closed, but all candidates are invited to appear in a meeting of the PCOs at 6:30 p.m. June 7 at the Poulsbo Library. Olson said that members of the public will be admitted if there is room, but questions will only be taken from the PCOs.
PCOs will select the three names at a meeting at 6 p.m. June 18 at the Kitsap County Fairgrounds Events Center. Again, public access will depend on space available.
If Stephenson is selected as commissioner then the party will need to repeat the process in order to select a new treasurer.
If Stern is selected, a majority of county commissioners would then be graduates of the University of California at Berkeley.