Delaware City Council's four ward seats are up for grabs, and voters will see battles for three of them on the Nov. 5 ballot.

1st Ward

Council's 1st Ward has the city's only unopposed race among the four.

Incumbent Chris Jones will begin another four-year term after the fall election to represent the ward, which generally covers the north and northwest parts of the city.

2nd Ward

In the most hotly contested race, incumbent council member Lisa Keller will attempt to fend off challengers Mike Rush and Stephen Tackett for the 2nd Ward seat, which generally covers the west and southwest portions of the city.

Keller, 45, lives on Harmony Drive.

"During the past 11 years on council, I've been the voice of my constituents at City Hall to ensure our city grows responsibly and with the best interest of residents in mind," she said.

"I spearheaded the construction of two new community centers and a splash pad in the 2nd Ward, reduced response times by constructing two new fire stations, doubled the capacity of our economic development office to attract more jobs to Delaware, and passed 11 consecutive balanced city budgets while providing exceptional city services," Keller said.

"During this time of extensive growth in our community, the city needs experienced leadership to assure we are growing in a limited, responsible and sustainable way that doesn't strain our resources and to assure our city retains the small-town feel everyone loves about Delaware," she said.

Keller received a bachelor's degree from the State University of New York and a master's degree from Ashland University.

A small-business owner, she and her husband, John, have two children: Megan, 13, and Brendan, 10.

During her three terms on council, Keller has served as chairwoman of the planning commission and various city committees. She is on the YMCA advisory board, is a Youth in Government Representative, is the liaison to Delaware City Schools, and volunteers for Habitat for Humanity, the veterans parade and at Schultz Elementary School.

Rush, 51, lives on Canal Street.

"I am a lifelong resident of the city, and I have a vision of what I believe the city should be," he said. "The current council seat has been filled by the same person for close to 11 years. It is time for a fresh perspective, a fresh set of eyes, a fresh voice on City Council."

He received a bachelor's degree in business administration from Ohio Dominican University, and has celebrated his 25th year of employment at Vertiv (FKA Emerson Network Power), where he is a site quality management systems coordinator.

He and his wife, Colleen, have three sons and a granddaughter.

He serves on the city parks and recreation advisory board and the city's new comprehensive steering committee. He also is a 3rd degree master mason.

Tackett, 25, is a resident of Saratoga Street.

"I'm running because I want to help maintain Delaware's hometown feel, and keeping it the beautiful city I remember growing up in," he said. "I also want to help get the citizens more involved with issues around the city and keep them informed about what's going on.

"I'm a lifelong resident that just wants to see this city beautiful and successful," Tackett said.

A senior airman bioenvironmental engineer with the 121st Medical unit at Rickenbacker Air Force Base, he has received formal technical training in public health and bioenvironmental engineering from the Air Force.

3rd Ward

Newcomers Cory Hoffman and George McNab are the two candidates for council's 3rd Ward seat, generally covering the south and southeast areas of the city.

Incumbent Jim Browning is not seeking reelection.

Hoffman, 34, lives on Dogwood Drive.

"I was a supporter of the incumbent, Jim Browning, and when I heard he wasn't going to run for reelection, I decided to get into the race," he said. "There is a lot of land and opportunity for continued growth in and around Delaware's 3rd Ward and that development should be done in the best interests of the people of Delaware, not just the developers who might be able to extract the most value possible from the community."

Hoffman is general counsel and tax attorney at Pinnacle CPA Advisory Group Inc.

He and his wife, Megan, have a daughter, Mara, 3, and a son, Evan, 11 months.

McNab, 35, calls Treeline Way home.

If elected, he said, his priorities will be balancing Delaware city traditions and excellence with smart economic development, improving transportation infrastructure and an efficient and customer-focused government.

"In order to grow and develop as a city, I believe that Delaware needs to continue to seize opportunities to engage new businesses and housing developments, all while supporting organizations that have been part of making the city what it is today," he said. "If the city can balance growth with tradition, this will allow Delaware to generate needed revenues, all while holding down taxes on existing businesses and citizens.

"The city has road improvement project needs that outweigh the current budgeted resources to fund them. While the voters indicated during the 2016 general election that they do not wish to pay higher taxes, infrastructure needs do not go away," McNab said. "While I do not support higher income taxes, I believe that the city needs to continue these projects and look for funding opportunities from the state and federal government, as well as other organizations, all while thinking through current city budget funding allocations.

A legislative liaison in Ohio, McNab received a bachelor's degree in political science from Ohio State University and is working on a master's degree from Ohio Dominican University.

He and his wife, Emily Douglas-McNab, have a son, Elliot, 3, and daughter, Aubrie, 14 months.

McNab is a volunteer for the nonprofit Grandmas Gifts, an all-volunteer run organization that provides assistance to children, schools, veterans, domestic-violence shelters, the homeless, and others in need who reside in the Appalachian region.

4th Ward

In another race that will see a newcomer replace an incumbent, Drew Farrell and Sarah JanTausch are candidates for the 4th Ward seat, which generally covers the north and east portions of the city.

Incumbent Kyle Rohrer, the unopposed Republican nominee for Delaware Municipal Court judge, is not seeking reelection.

Farrell, 31, lives on West Lincoln Avenue.

"I have volunteered with Main Street Delaware for about 12 years now in various capacities. I am running for City Council simply to help make Delaware a better place," he said. "I love where I live and want to be part of its future.

"I have worked for or in close cooperation with city governments in various capacities since I was in college and enjoy the challenges and excitement that comes with representing and working with a wide range of people. I particularly want to make sure that citizens retain their voice in government and are not overpowered by party politics, developers or other interest groups that don't always have the best interests of residents at heart," he said.

A teacher with Westerville City Schools, Farrell received a bachelor's degree in education from Ohio Wesleyan University and a master's degree in educational psychology from Miami University. He also is working on a master's degree in educational administration.

He and his wife, Whitney, have a 3-year-old daughter.

JanTausch, 27, also lives on West Lincoln Avenue, in a home she shares with her husband, Jonathan.

"I care deeply about my hometown and our citizens," she said. "As a lifelong resident of Delaware, I feel that I am uniquely positioned and qualified to address the complex challenges that Delaware is facing, and will continue to face, as a result of its growth.

"I have the background, policy experience and collaborative leadership style in order to make Delaware a better place to live, work and raise a family," JanTausch said.

She received a bachelor's degree from Ohio Wesleyan University and has completed Management Advancement for the Public Service courses at Ohio State University.

JanTausch is a development director for Turning Point, a Marion-based nonprofit that aids victims of domestic violence in six counties, including Delaware.

She is enrolled in the current Delaware Citizens Police Academy, has completed the Jo Ann Davidson Ohio Leadership Institute, is a member of the Delaware Rotary Club and volunteers at Delaware Christian School.

NOTE: Look for candidate Q&As and additional election coverage in the coming weeks in ThisWeek Delaware News and online at ThisWeekNEWS.com.

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