By Liz Shepherd
WARSAW — Four Republican candidates are vying for a seat on Wayne Township’s three-person board in the May 2022 primary.
Republican candidates for the Advisory Board are Trish Nichols, Lance Grubbs, Gordon Nash, and Joshua Spangle. Nash and Spangle are incumbents for Wayne Township Board. Voters may choose up to three candidates.
Jeanie Stackhouse, Wayne Township’s Trustee, is the only Republican candidate who has filed for the trustee position. She is currently running unopposed.
The primary election is May 3.
Listed below is information on each candidate running for a seat on Wayne Township’s Board, in alphabetical order.
Grubbs has lived in Warsaw all of his life and worked for the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute for 22 years. He has retired from full-time work but currently works several part-time jobs with Stonehenge Pro Shop, Warsaw Community Schools, and the Warsaw Traffic Safety Commission.
Grubbs said his knowledge of the community and services available to Wayne Township residents qualifies him for a seat on the board.
“I believe I can listen to whatever comes up and make the best decision for the board,” said Grubbs.
Nash has lived in Wayne Township all of his life and has served on the board since the mid-2000s. He has worked with the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Office for 36 years and currently works as a transport officer. Nash is also a member of the National Rifle Association.
When asked if he sees any issues within the township, Nash said the office is running smoothly. He said Wayne Township recently purchased its office on South Buffalo Street, establishing a permanent home for the office.
“So any future trustees or board members now have their own place,” said Nash.
“I do care about the community, especially Wayne Township,” said Nash. “With my past experience with the township, I believe I’m a qualified candidate who understands how to keep the budgets down.”
Letrecia “Trish” Nichols
Nichols is a lifelong resident of Kosciusko County and is a former Warsaw City Councilwoman. She is currently the executive director at Black Pine Animal Sanctuary. Nichols is also a member of the Warsaw Rotary Club, American Legion Women’s Auxiliary, Republican Women’s Club and the Big Cat Sanctuary Alliance steering committee and finance committee. Nichols and her husband attend Warsaw Community Church.
Nichols said her experiences with city council and Black Pine Animal Sanctuary gave her knowledge on working with budgets and being fiscally responsible.
“I’ve been involved in the Warsaw community on a variety of levels and have a wealth of experience in government and community and economic development,” said Nichols. “I think our community aspires to be proactive and take the necessary actions that allow us to remain strong and viable. The trustee’s office has historically been financially conservative and has a great deal of latitude with how it approaches its impact on the community. As an individual I choose to look for solutions, I feel chance favors the prepared and in these uncertain times there are a multitude of ways the office could have a positive and far-reaching impact on our community.”
Spangle has lived in Wayne Township for four years. Prior to moving into the township, Spangle served as the Monroe Township Trustee for six years. He has worked for the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Office for 20 years and is a detective sergeant.
In an interview with InkFreeNews, Spangle said Wayne Township’s office is running smoothly and noted that the board has lowered the tax rate every year. He also said the township used rainy day funds to purchase their office space on South Buffalo Street versus renting it.
“We did some renovations to the building and made it a usable office space,” said Spangle. “We wanted to make sure we had a building that was accessible to people and we didn’t have to borrow money to make that purchase, so it didn’t cost the taxpayers any more money.
Spangle also noted the importance of local partnerships and discussed the board’s connections with Fellowship Missions.
“We now have a yearly budgeted line item to make sure to give them (Fellowship Missions) money,” said Spangle. “For people who need a place to stay, we refer them there before spending money on hotels. It serves as a long-term plan rather than a one-night fix elsewhere.”
In the future, Spangle said he’d like the township to consider partnering with county or city entities to establish sidewalks in areas that need them, such as the Hunters Ridge housing addition.
“That’s where I’d like to look for funds in reserves to either pay for that or pay for the planning,” said Spangle.