FORT WAYNE – Republicans swept three of the top county positions Tuesday night, including commissioner, treasurer and coroner.
At 10:40 p.m. with four of the county’s 327 precincts’ results still unknown, incumbent Commissioner Nelson Peters had more than 63 percent of the vote; incumbent Treasurer Susan Orth had almost 64 percent of the vote; and Craig Nelson led the race for coroner with more than 62 percent of the vote.
Peters was launched into a third term after an overwhelming victory over Democrat Gordon Anthony.
He was thrilled.
No doubt about it, I am delighted, Peters said.
Peters serves in District 1 which encompasses the east side of the county. While county commissioners must live in their districts, they are elected at large by all Allen County voters.
Peters had hoped to be re-elected to continue his focus on the county’s successful economic development strategies. Voters supported him based on that message, he said. That message included the creation of jobs and moving infrastructure along, he said.
That, combined with a regional perspective, will place the county in a position to compete globally in the days to come, Peters said.
Nelson triumphed over Democratic challenger Norman Knuth, and will now replace Dr. E. Jon Brandenberger, who was not eligible to run for another term because of term limits.
Nelson never took a victory for granted and said he was happy and relieved that the election was over.
Everyone told me to expect a win because the county is predominantly Republican, but you just never know, he said.
In addition to serving as deputy coroner, Nelson has been a dentist for 45 years and maintains a part-time practice in LaGrange. A forensic odontologist, Nelson has for years been called on to conduct dental identifications throughout 15 counties in northeast Indiana.
Orth easily overtook Democrat Scott Williams, landing her a second term in office.
Orth was excited to hear of her victory and anxious to get started on some ideas she has for her office, she said.
I look forward to the next four years and finding new ways of doing things while continuing to improve our level of customer service, even though I’m sure there will be more budget cuts, Orth said.
Before becoming treasurer in 2008, Orth worked for the county for almost 15 years, 10 years as the chief deputy treasurer and about five years as the assistant supervisor of assessments in the auditor’s office.