The Republican Party of Story County reconvened this week in a special nominating convention to nominate two members of the party to contend for elected office this fall. Those candidates will be current Story County Supervisor Martin Chitty, of Nevada, and Becky Jordan, of Colo, who will challenge Story County Auditor Lucy Martin on the ballot in November.
Chitty was appointed as the replacement for Supervisor Paul Toot, who died unexpectedly on May 6, and said at the time that he was chosen to follow Toot that he had planned on running the fall to serve out the remainder of the term.
According to Chitty, a former FedEx driver and current Nevada School Board President, that is not a stance he took lightly.
“It’s pretty humbling and gratifying,” Chitty said. “You don’t plan for an event like this in your life, fate just shows up one day and it’s there looking at you.”
Chitty said that he had been close friends with Toot all his life and he would gladly go back to being a FedEx driver to have his friend back, but without that option running for reelection is the best way he knows to honor Toot’s legacy.
According to Chitty, going into the election he plans on focusing on the doing the job he has been given and continuing to learn more about the position as fast as he can.
“You have to be in a position to be up to speed on the fact that a lot of things move in this county at a higher speed than a lot of people realize,” Chitty said.
He added that some of his main issues will be focusing on economic concerns of people living everywhere in the county, not just Ames.
“You’ve got to be responsive to the fact that the county is north, south, east and west and that the people throughout the entirety of it should have the belief or the expectations that we’re there to serve all of them not just some of them,” Chitty said.
Chitty is being challenged by Democratic candidate Linda Murken, who said she is looking forward to the campaign.
“I don’t know Marty that well; I’ve only had a couple of conversations with him. Voters will have several opportunities this fall to compare our qualifications. I am looking forward to the many candidate forums and other opportunities to visit with more Story County voters about my experience and the skills I will bring to the board, and to hear their thoughts about our county government,” Murken said.
For the auditor’s seat, the Story County GOP has nominated an financial analyst for Hewlett Packard Enterprise, who says she has the experience necessary to be the taxpayers “Watchdog” in Story County.
“It’s a humbling experience to be nominated for the opportunity to serve the community as the Story County Auditor,” Jordan said. “I will bring a unique perspective that will allow me to act as the taxpayers’ watchdog with integrity, transparency and accountability. I have worked with accounts in my current role from many industries and identified process improvements, cost savings and new billable revenue streams.”
Jordan grew up in Knoxville but currently lives in Colo where she volunteers at her local church and participates in the Colo World Outlook Club as the Secretary/Treasurer. If elected, Jordan said she can bring years of experience to the job, as well as a new perspective that will allow her to succeed in the position.
“I have been managing the finances of various industries over the past 18 years. In that time, I’ve discovered that a new perspective is vital to effective financial management. I look forward to bringing that new perspective as the Story County Auditor,” Jordan said.
Current Story County Auditor, Lucy Martin, declined to comment on the nomination.