Dublin Villager

Ward 4 City Council seat

Kaplan says residents deserve responsive leaders


JD Kaplan has never run for office, but his involvement in other campaigns has helped him set his sights on the Ward 4 Dublin City Council seat.

Kaplan and Kevin Cooper are both challenging Dublin Mayor Tim Lecklider for his Ward 4 seat on Dublin City Council in the Nov. 5 election.

Kaplan said he has knocked on doors throughout Dublin helping with campaigns, including those of his wife Angel Rhodes, who currently serves as assistant policy director for early childhood education for Gov. John Kasich.

"Between Angel's campaigns, I've found these people are not getting their needs met by talking to City Council," he said.

The owner of After Dark Graphics said he works in town and is very involved with his neighborhood. He wants to expand this with a seat on Dublin City Council.

"I've been going door to door," he said. "I want to do that after I'm elected and have coffees. I keep hearing people don't know their City Council."

With more than five years in Dublin, Kaplan has gotten involved in the community serving as a volunteer for the Dublin Irish Festival and supporting the year-old Dublin Special Olympics team.

He is also a board member for the Brain Injury Association of Ohio, something he got involved with after witnessing his father's struggle with Alzheimer's.

Kaplan said his neighbors look out for one another and help. He wants to expand that attitude over the rest of Ward 4.

"I went to the Lowell Trace Labor Day picnic," he said, adding he heard complaints of traffic and speeding from residents.

"I want to be an advocate for people. I live here. I work here. I volunteer here. I'm always here."

Along with listening to resident concerns, Kaplan said he wants to help people stay in their Dublin homes into their golden years.

"No one under 65 is living here," he said. "If property taxes go up people can't afford to live here."

Taking care of what Dublin has would also be a focus for Kaplan.

"We have great services. The streets are always plowed. The trash is always picked up," he said.

"But some things aren't being taken care of, like traffic problems in Lowell Trace."

Kaplan also wants to keep Dublin safe by taking care of traffic problems and keeping the city free of drugs.

"Heroin is coming to the area and you can get it for $10 a pop," he said. "I want to have neighborhood meetings and say 'Here's what to look for' or 'If you're having problems, here's what you can do.' "

Most of it is about getting people involved, Kaplan said.

"I want to reinvigorate the neighborhoods," he said. "I want to get people involved."

For more information about Kaplan and his campaign, look online at Kaplanfordublin.com.