(Editor’s Note: Five questions were distributed to each of Wheeling’s 23 candidates and incumbents running for a council seat or for the mayor’s position, and the men and women were invited to offer their answers for publication free of charge. As explained to them, the articles will appear in the order the replies were received.)
Tony Domenick, Candidate, Mayor
He’s run for mayor before – four times, in fact – but not just to see his name on the ballot. Make no mistake, though, because Tony Domenick has not run for the position every election cycle. In 2012, for example, the race for Wheeling’s mayor’s position was a two-candidate race between the incumbent, Andy McKenzie, and former resident Jerrome Poynton, and that was because this longtime Wheeling Island resident pays much attention to city government, and, at the time, he felt the city’s direction was in capable hands.
But now he sees an opportunity.
The 62-year-old Domenick has been employed in several different areas, and for nearly a decade he has organized a charitable concert in downtown Wheeling that has raised more than $25,000 for the United Way, Wounded Warriors, and Harmony House organizations. His campaign coffers are free of outside contributions, and he is attempting to reach as many voters as possible by attending community functions and using social media. He also plans to participate in as many forums as the Wheeling community stages in order to deliver a message he believes all Friendly City residents should hear.
Why have you chosen to run for City Council at this time?
I am running because I bring a unique perspective to the office. My eclectic background and education allow me to recognize the needed improvements to Wheeling.
What do you feel are the most critical issues in your ward at this time?
Recreation improvements, saving historically important landmarks, attracting new businesses, and infrastructure upgrades.
How do you feel you can improve the city of Wheeling by representing your ward?
Starting with cleanup of streets of trash, debris, and panhandlers. I, due to my work schedule, am able to be out in all neighborhoods at all hours, day and night. I have a good relationship with city officials and administration that can be utilized in updating them to problem areas.
If elected, how do you plan to communicate with your constituents?
The mayor has an office in the city building, and I have the following personal contact information: 304-312-1760; ardomenick@ gmail.com; on Facebook as “Tony Domenick;” and I will attend any and all functions as asked or needed.
What is the main message you wish to convey to the voters in your ward?
Wheeling has greatness that needs to be added upon and improvement that needs addressed. I am not a Johnny-come-lately who knows nothing of Wheeling’s bright past which can be leveraged into a brighter future. Unlike any other candidate who has run for this office since 1996, I do not retire or retreat home from the streets when the sun goes down. Last, this is a part-time position that requires a full-time presence. I am not so tied to employment that I cannot give the citizens the representation they deserve.
(Photos provided by Tony Domenick)