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Kidron-native Hofstetter begins 2023 as county commissioner

Photo by Dan Starcher, Wayne County public communications coordinator

Wayne County Commissioner-elect Jonathan Hofsetter, left, is sworn into office by Municipal Court Judge Timothy VanSickle. Hofstetter took office Jan. 1.

DGKN staff report

Incoming Wayne County Commissioner Jonathan Hofstetter was sworn into his new role on Dec. 22 by Municipal Court Judge Timothy VanSickle. Hofstetter replaces outgoing commissioner Becky Foster.

Hofstetter said in a news release that he expects that his experience as a diesel mechanic, firefighter, Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), and Sugar Creek Township trustee has prepared him well for his new role in public service.

“I want to blend in,” Hofstetter said in the news release. “There is a good team in place at the county, and I will strive to be oil that helps everything run smoothly, rather than sand.”

The first item on Hofstetter’s list is to get to know his colleagues and the roles they play.

“It is important to get to know everyone and build solid working relationships,” he said. “I want to understand the day-to-day operations, and be able to pitch in whenever and wherever I am needed.”

While some of the aspects of being a commissioner will be new to Hofstetter, others, like budgeting, will be familiar.

“I worked with a budget of about a million dollars,” he continued in the release. “The county budget will be significantly more, but I am very familiar with the process.”

Hofstetter, a self-described “hands-on” type of person that started throwing hay bales and feeding livestock at 15 years old, considers himself fortunate to be serving alongside commissioners Sue Smail and Ron Amstutz.

“I am looking forward to working with Jonathan,” Smail said. “I think his background and youth will be a huge asset to the Commissioner team.”

Amstutz echoed Smail’s sentiment and is excited to help usher in the next generation of Wayne County leaders.

“I’m pleased to see a next-generation commissioner – and a very good one – joining our three-member Board,” he said in the news release.

Hofstetter officially began on Jan. 1, but he has been spending as much time as possible in the Administration Building getting himself acclimated.

“I am very thankful that the stage has been set for me to come in and do well,” he said. “I want what is best for the county, and when it is time for me to go, I would like my replacement to find it in better shape than when I first took office.”

Hofstetter wants to meet people where they are and see what challenges they face.

“I want people to know what options are available,” he said. “Whatever situation they find themselves in, I want to be there to help.”

Hofstetter, his wife Laura, and their five children live near Kidron.

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