Plesich, Corrigan vie for clerk of courts office
STEUBENVILLE — Jefferson County residents will be seeing a new face in the Clerk of Courts office.
After 20 years in office the incumbent, John Corrigan, decided not to seek re-election.
His son, Darrin, won the Democratic nomination, and is squaring off with Republican Andrew Plesich in the Nov. 3 general election.
Darrin Corrigan, 48, said he’s the only candidate with experience in an elective office — he’s served for eight years as Steubenville township trustee and nine as Steubenville township clerk and fiscal officer. He said that governmental experience has been invaluable in preparing him to handle the clerk of courts duties.
“I also have 28 years working at the Jefferson County Water Department, overseeing 10 employees and day-to-day operations, resolving any concerns from customers about Jefferson County water,” Corrigan said, adding he’ll give up both positions if he’s elected and focus solely on the clerk’s job.
“I’ll be a full-time clerk of courts, if I’m elected,” he said.
He said he’d continue programs his father started that make life more convenient for Jefferson County residents, like free passport photos and establishing a satellite office in Rayland with Saturday office hours. He also had ideas of his own, like convincing the state to let them sell renewal stickers.
“I do think my father’s done a wonderful job, I’ve learned from the best,” he said. “I would also like to continue scanning all the old records as well as new ones in the legal division,” he said.
“As far as the auto title office, I’m going to try and pursue getting permission from the state of Ohio to sell the annual renewal stickers for license plates so if you buy a car, you can get your plate at the same time they’re doing the title … I want try to talk to the state about the ability to sell the renewal stickers for your plates, which would be more convenient.”
He said his focus would be to give the taxpayers of Jefferson County “the best services they can get.”
“I will always try to do what’s best for the taxpayers,” he added, pointing out he has run successful campaigns and won re-election in the past.
Corrigan also said, “My qualifications, the 28 years experience I have at the water department and dealing with the public, and my 17 years as an elected official” should sway voters his way at the polls.
Corrigan resides at 126 Mary Ann Place, Mingo Junction, with his wife, Jane, and two children.
Plesich, 44, is a title examiner with Capitol Funding Title Agency in Weirton, and is a contract landman working with Halo Land Management.
“I believe I’m the right choice, the best combination of relevant work experience and education, for the position,” he said. “I have a proven track record, working in the courthouse, not as an employee but as a title examiner for 18 years. A lot of the work and research I do is conducted in the legal division of the Clerk of Courts. I’ve also spent significant time working courthouses. I feel like I’d bring a new perspective.”
He said he’s also had management experience, primarily in the oil and gas industry, and spent nine years as an adjunct instructor at Eastern Gateway Community College teaching business classes, like business law.
Plesich has a bachelor’s degree in human resources management from the University of Akron in 2001 and a master’s in business administration from Franciscan University of Steubenville in 2004.
“It’s a big job, I do see it as a challenge,” he said. “There are 310 sections of the Ohio Revised Code that deal with the clerk of courts, so it is big. We need to make sure we’re keeping as current as we can with technological change. I’d want to make sure we’re making transactions as convenient as possible for customers, whether they come in in person or virtually. If I’m elected, I think expanding the website is one of the simplest things we can do — provide more information, (such as) costs and fees, jury information, items needed for title transactions. The more information people have, the more prepared they’ll be if they come in for service.”
He said local attorneys have approached him about e-filing, which would allow them to submit documents electronically, “but that’s down the road.”
“Obviously, I have a business background, I’ve taken managerial accounting and finance classes — a lot of that knowledge would serve me well to help find ways to save money. And with my background in human resource management, I have that aspect, too.”
He resides at 609 Lauretta Drive, Steubenville, with his wife, Elisha, and one daughter.