November 27, 2014


Donors pay to add Commissioner Tom Williams’ name to county buildings


A group of citizens has collected enough money to add Commissioner Tom Williams' name to the sign in front of the county Board of Elections building. STEVE MANHEIM/CHRONICLE

A group of citizens has collected enough money to add Commissioner Tom Williams’ name to the sign in front of the county Board of Elections building. STEVE MANHEIM/CHRONICLE

ELYRIA — When he ran for election in 2010, Lorain County Commissioner Tom Williams promised he wouldn’t spend county money to put his name on county buildings, but he’s not standing in the way of a group of citizens raising money to put his name up.

The group has collected enough money to get three signs with Williams’ name put up at the Lorain County Dog Kennel and for one side of the sign in front of the county Board of Elections building in Sheffield Township.

“He’s done a great job,” Geri Cahill-Miller, one of the people behind the effort, said. “We just wanted him on the signs.”

County Special Projects Director Karen Davis said the signs at the kennel, which went up in the fall, cost $230, while the sign that will appear at the elections board will cost $275. She said she has not yet placed the order.

Williams said he thinks that’s a lot of money and taxpayers shouldn’t be footing the bill so his name can appear on county signs.

“That is a lot of money when you think about $275 for a small sign to hang out there,” he said. “I thought it was outrageous for taxpayers to pay for it.”

The names of Williams’ fellow commissioners, Ted Kalo and Lori Kokoski, both Democrats, have appeared on the signs for years, while the place where Williams’ name would appear remained blank.

The Board of Elections sign will go up as Williams, a Republican, is seeking re-election. He is unopposed in his party’s May primary but will face a challenge from term-limited state Rep. Matt Lundy, D-Elyria, in the fall.

Williams said he isn’t certain if having his names on a few county buildings will make much of a difference in election-year politics.

“I don’t really know how much people pay attention to those signs,” he said.

Williams said he would prefer if the signs used the generic “Lorain County Board of Commissioners” rather than having individual names so they don’t have to be replaced when people leave office.

He said he never sought out private funding to cover the cost of putting his name up.

“It’s a very nice gesture for the individuals to do it, but my focus isn’t on getting my name on buildings,” Williams said. “If that was the case, I would have followed the status quo and had my name put on all the buildings when I took office in 2011.”

Cahill-Miller also said her group, which is comprised of animal rescue and other nonprofit organizations, doesn’t view their efforts as political.

She said they still need more than $1,000 to get Williams name up on a few other signs in the county, including the other side of the elections board sign as well as signs at the Lorain County Regional Airport and at the county Department of Job and Family Services building.

“As we can pick them off, we’re going to do them,” she said.

Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or

  • BroDelish5566

    Largest donor to date…sis delish

  • BroDelish5566

    save your money, matt lundys name will be there shortly

    • Bill

      Maybe, but only due to the ignorance of the Lorain County voters.

      • Daniel Sutter

        Ignorance?, they should know better…

    • John Boy

      I fully support Matt Lundy. I mean look at the great job the rest of the democrats have done for Lorain County, you just can’t argue with success like that.

      • HankKwah

        LMAO Thanks for that!!

        • B4CE

          Another profound reply from Honking Hank

          • HankKwah

            And yet, we’re still waiting for something worthwhile out of you.

            Will it be this decade? Or shall we give up hope entirely?

            I believe it’s the latter.

            Oh, and good job staying current on my replies. You can’t even troll well. No surprise there.

      • luvmytoaster

        Yeah, the county needs 3 democrats as commissioners – what a joke……Good luck…….is there a sinkhole up ahead? Should I just drive straight into it and see what happens?

  • Jamie Smith

    John Boy and BroDelish …. ^ 5 to you Boys ! The sign will read MATT LUNDY very shortly. He will be awesome as a Commissioner .

  • LorainCountyVoter

    I think I would wait till after the election cause there is a real strong possibility that Matt Lundy’s name will appear instead.

  • Donald Duck

    I see Mathew Lundy has his cohorts posting on here. Go to and vote on there home page. Williams is winning by 75%.

    • LorainCountyVoter

      You think that’s a good sign. They had Romney winning by a landslide during the presidential election too. You see what happened there. Lorain County is and always has been a democratic county. Look how many Republicans are in office and how many have been voted out in the past several years. You can’t win as a Republican if there is a somewhat decent or not decent Democrat running against you. And that’s a fact in this county. Like it or not.

      • Bill

        Your right except most of the time they are not decent Democrats. Not even close. As evidenced by Kalo and Kokoski. Those 2 alone prove the idiocy
        of Lorain County voters.

  • Summer Smart

    Funny, he didn’t want any money spent and now that we are getting closer and closer to election time, he wants his name out there. Advertising on the backs, yet again, of all the residents, not just the contributors.

    • LorainCountyVoter

      Funny, I thought the same thing. The name hasn’t been there or anything said about it till now, election time. Now he’s using it to get votes to say, “see look at me” To think we can’t see right thru that. Typical Republican.

  • SniperFire

    I suppose the Chronicle thinks this is a nice hit piece on the Republican. LOL

  • bigmacky

    Tom is a man of his word and didn’t use taxpayer monies to put his name on county sites – kinda like him for his honesty and integrity. and do most people forget that Lunday was a cronie of one Bill Grace? looking good Elyria – be a few more years before that gets righted

  • LookBackTwo

    Politicians putting their names on government property kind of reminds me of dogs marking their territory!

  • 2muchgovernment

    I agree there should be no names up there. Having names not only ends costing money when they need to change but also feeds egos. If someone doesn’t know the Commissioners’ names, look then up on the county websites. So, either take down dumb & dumber’s names or put up Tom’s. He has earned that right more than the other two have in all their years in office.