Committee recommends Montgomery for vacant Ward 8 seat

March 28, 2011

A special committee created to select a replacement for Ward 8 Councilwoman Sandra Kurt will recommend Phil Montgomery, an internal auditor for Time Warner Cable and vice president of Summit County Young Democrats, for Kurt's vacant seat at tonight's City Council meeting.

Montgomery was selected from a group of 13 candidates because he has the energy, time and flexibility necessary to address citizen concerns and manage the many challenges of a city council position, said Tina Merlitti, chair of a special committee created to review the candidates. However, she said another key factor in Montgomery's selection was that he does not plan to run for the Ward 8 council seat when his interim term expires December 31.

"There were many good, qualified candidates who said they will run for the Ward 8 seat regardless of whether they are chosen for the interim appointment," Merlitti said. "The committee did not want to give one an advantage by running as the incumbent, or put someone in the seat who would be weighed down with council duties during their campaign.

"We want to allow Ward 8 voters to choose who will be their next councilperson from this outstanding field of candidates," she said.

Former Ward 8 Councilwoman Sandra Kurt resigned her seat March 4 to accept a seat on County Council.

If City Council approves the committee's selection of Montgomery at tonight's Council meeting, he will be sworn in as Ward 8 Councilman on Friday.