By Art Hunter
Four elected officials from Clermont County took their oaths of office Friday, Dec. 28.
The four leaders, State Senator Joe Uecker, State Representative John Becker, Ohio State School Board Member Jeff Hardin, and Clermont County Commissioner Ed Humphrey were all sworn in at an event, attended by many friends and supporters of the officials, at Receptions Eastgate in Union Township.
Uecker, Humphrey, and Hardin were sworn in by Judge Robert Ringland of the 12th Circuit Court of Appeals. Becker was sworn in by Ohio Supreme Court Justice Sharon Kennedy.
Joe Uecker was elected to his first term in the Ohio Senate Nov. 6.
He has represented the residents of Clermont County in the House of Representatives since 2004, when he was first elected to represent the 66th District. Prior to his election as representative, Uecker served as a Miami Township Trustee for 14 years.
“I would not have gotten anywhere without the the support and encouragement of my wife Patti,” Uecker said. He singled out for special thanks Emily Niehaus, wife of Ohio Senate President Tom Niehaus, who endorsed his candidacy.
“I will always be indebted to Emily for helping me with that,” Uecker said.
Clermont County Commissioner Ed Humphrey was returned to the commissioners’ office by the voters in November.
Humphrey was elected Miami Township Trustee in 1990. He was appointed to serve out an unexpired term on the Board of County Commissioners in 2008, and began his first full term in 2009.
“I really enjoy my job, it’s been wonderful,” Humphrey said. “We’ve made a lot of great accomplishments over the past four years, and we can look forward to more great things in the next four years.”
John Becker was elected to his first term in the Ohio House of Representatives, where he will represent the 65th District, in November.
Becker, a tax accountant and utility consultant, has been a Republican State Committeeman since 2004. He has been a precinct committeeman since 1993.
After introducing his family and thanking them and his supporters, Becker explained why Justice Kennedy was administering the oath of office to him. He said that he became acquainted with her with her while he was on the state steering committee charged with deciding who the Republican Party would endorse for Supreme Court, and Kennedy was running for that position.
“My dream all along was that we would both win the elections for our respective offices, and that she would swear me in,” Becker said. “That happened, and she’s here to swear me in.”
Jeffrey Hardin was returned to the Ohio State Board of Education, where he represents the 10th District, in November. The 10th District includes Adams, Brown, Clark, Clermont, Clinton, Fayette, Gallia, Greene, Highland, Jackson, Lawrence, Madison, Pike, Ross, Scioto, and Vinton counties, and part of Pickaway County.
Hardin said that each of the officials being sworn in owed a great debt of gratitude to all of their supporters.
“Each one of you here is a friend of one of the people being sworn in,” Hardin said. “That friendship means more in life than anything else we can have,” Hardin said.