The Ohio Secretary of State’s Office selected Mahoning County Board of Elections Director Joyce Kale-Pesta as its Democratic Ohio Election Official of the Year.
“This shows the taxpayers in Mahoning County that we have the best election official in the entire state,” said David Betras, an elections-board member and chairman of the county Democratic Party. “She is dedicated and devoted to providing outstanding elections in Mahoning County.”
Betras and Mark Munroe, the elections-board chairman and head of the county Republican Party, nominated Kale-Pesta for the award.
In their nomination letter, Betras and Munroe wrote: “The fact that two people who rarely agree on anything are nominating her and are thoroughly convinced that she deserves the recognition attendant to this award speaks volumes about her qualifications, commitment to public service, tireless pursuit of excellence, and total dedication to our democracy and the electoral process upon which it is built.”
Kale-Pesta organized the board’s early-voting plan and led the effort to secure the needed staff at voting precincts, Betras and Munroe wrote.
She is a member of the state’s Board of Voting Machine Examiners.
Kale-Pesta, who has worked at the board for about 25 years, was appointed director last year after spending 61/2 years as deputy director. Before that, she was a board clerk.