New ideas and vision for the city were the deciding factors for Groveport City Council members who chose Chad Grashel to fill the unexpired term of former member Marvin Stevens.

Grashel, 35, is a service quality specialist for Columbus-based NetJets Inc. He was appointed by a 4-1 vote during council's April 9 meeting.

"It is very humbling and a tremendous honor to serve the citizens of Groveport," Grashel said. "My main goal is to continue the great work of the current council.

"With everything positive happening in this community and the opening of the new high school fast approaching, it is an exciting time for the residents of Groveport."

He said his top priority is local businesses.

"The growth opportunities for the local businesses are tremendous," he said. "I hope to continue to enable growth that positively impacts everyone living in the community."

Councilman Ed Dildine Jr. said he hopes the appointment helps generate more interest among young residents to volunteer or get involved with city committees.

"As we started talking about the candidates, (Grashel) is a true new vision, or new eyes, looking at what we do," he said. "He's only lived here two years. He doesn't have the history here like everyone else on council.

"We kind of went a different direction, looking for new ideas or new blood, as they say."

Councilman Shawn Cleary cast the dissenting vote because, he said, he couldn't settle on a candidate, but he supports the choice of Grashel.

"He's going to bring new thoughts, new ideas and new enthusiasm," Cleary said.

Grashel will serve the remainder of Stevens' term, which expires Dec. 31, 2021.

Stevens was elected last November but only served a little more than two months before resigning March 12 because, as a former Ohio Department of Youth Services employee, he stood to lose his health insurance if he remained on council.

According to Ohio Public Employee Retirement system rules, elected officials are classified as re-employed retirees and are not permitted to have a health reimbursement account, under to state and federal laws.

Council interviewed three other candidates: Cheryl Ballou, a regional account manager for United States Traffic Network based in Chicago and president of the Village of Grovepointe Condo Association; Dan Knode, a former member of Groveport City Council and now general manager of operations for American Limo's Columbus office; and Jack Rupp Jr., an assistant fire chief for Plain Township who has served on the city's water and city charter committees and currently serves as chairman of the Groveport Personnel Board of Review.

Amy Shropshire, founder and principal of CASK Communications and marketing director for the nonprofit Drupal4Gov, did not appear for interviews, according to Dildine. Marie Kujawski withdrew from consideration before interviews were scheduled.

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