Trumbull clerk of courts won’t seek re-election

WARREN — Karen Infante Allen, who has served as Trumbull County clerk of courts since January 2005, said she won’t seek re-election in 2024 when her next term is up.

The county Democratic and Republican parties already have candidates interested in the seat.

“I want to retire and spend more time with my family,” said Infante Allen, a Democrat. “I feel I’ve served well during my years. I was blessed to serve this long. I love my job and I still do. It’s just time.”

Infante Allen of Niles was first elected clerk of courts in 2004 after winning a contested Democratic primary for the open seat followed by defeating David T. Simon, a Republican, in the general election. After that, she was re-elected four times, running unopposed three times.

Infante Allen unsuccessfully challenged longtime incumbent Margaret O’Brien in a bitter 2000 Democratic primary. O’Brien chose not to seek re-election in 2004.

Before winning the 2004 election, Infante Allen spent 17 years at the Niles Municipal Court with her last job there being computer systems administrator / bookkeeper.

Infante Allen said during her time as clerk of courts, she has moved the office toward electronic filing and has made it self-sufficient in terms of funding.

“She’s done a fantastic job as clerk,” Mark Alberini, county Democratic chairman, said of Infante Allen. “She has served the residents of Trumbull County well, and I thank her for her service.”

Jennefer Holland of Howland, chief deputy clerk for the county’s juvenile court division who spent 12 years at the clerk of courts as first domestic relations clerk and then as administrative assistant, is interested in being the Democratic Party’s nominee, Alberini said.

“She’s been active in our party and meeting fellow Democrats,” Alberini said of Holland. “We endorse in countywide races. I don’t know what the field is going to look like. She is the only person so far to express interest.”

Trumbull County Republican Party Chairman Michael Bollas said Vienna Trustee Richard Dascenzo Jr. wants to run for clerk of courts.

All of the other incumbent Trumbull County executive branch Democrats up for re-election in 2024 plan to seek another term, Alberini said.

Trumbull County was a longtime Democratic stronghold, but has become more Republican in the past few years.

In 2020, Democratic incumbents for county commissioner, state senator and an Ohio House seat lost to Republicans. In last year’s election, Republicans won every contested race on the ballot including Democratic-held seats for county commissioner, auditor and an Ohio House seat in which the incumbents didn’t seek re-election.

“It’s always challenging,” Alberini said in response to a question about Democrats winning in 2024 in Trumbull County. “It’s always interesting interesting to see who throws their hat in the ring. Sometimes there are surprises and sometimes there aren’t. Presidential elections drive turnout. When there’s high turnout, Democrats do better.”

Bollas said: “I feel good about next year’s election. I have every confidence it will be the same as the last one. We’ll do well.”

Infante Allen said there’s been a change in politics in the county, “but that was not part of my decision at all. That didn’t come into play.”



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