CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. — Greene Township, Pa., resident Garry Gontz announced recently he plans to run for Franklin County Commissioner.
Gontz, 57, recently retired as a business and industry specialist for the U.S. Department of Defense with nearly 34 years combined federal service.
Gontz, a Democrat, said he intends to be a running mate for Bob Ziobrowski, a commissioner seeking re-election.
"I think Bob has done a good job, and I would be honored to serve on the board of commissioners with him," Gontz said in a news release.
After spending nearly 29 years in production and management positions at Letterkenny Army Depot, he was tapped by the Department of Defense to be base transition coordinator to assist with the realignment of Letterkenny in 1995. He described his job as facilitating and mediating the differing positions of the U.S. Army and the local re-use committee.
According to the news release, he was selected to work for the Pentagon coordinating defense department assistance, project management and grants at Base Realignment and Closure sites across the country. He said that in that role, he interacted with many municipal and county governments, and he said that experience would prove to be valuable as a county commissioner.
"I've been learning about government from the inside for my entire career, but because of the Hatch Act, I was previously prohibited from using that experience as an elected official," Gontz said. "Now that I have retired, I am able to contribute more to the community."
Gontz, who was born and raised in Scotland, Pa., has worked with the Chambersburg Community Theater with his wife, Vicki. He was the treasurer of the Totem Pole Playhouse and a board member of the Chambersburg Hospital.
Gontz was recently appointed to the Letterkenny Industrial Development Authority Board.
Gontz graduated from Chambersburg Area Senior High School and has a bachelor's degree in public relations from Shippensburg (Pa.) University. He is a member of the Chambersburg First Church of God and a member of the Chambersburg Evening Lions.
The primary election is May 17. Commissioners are paid $70,000 a year.