Get to Know Brad Cromes
Name: Brad Cromes
Office You Are Seeking: Portage County Treasurer
Twitter Handle: @bradcromes
Why are you running? I am running to retain my position as Portage Co. Treasurer because I think this office has an important role to play in promoting financial wellness in our community. That starts with my office, and I have tried since I was appointed last year to be an innovative, transparent steward of our tax dollars. I have worked to make more of our records available online than ever before, and to make our website, Facebook page, and payment systems as user friendly as possible. We have work to do in those areas, but I feel we have made tremendous progress, and I'm excited by the opportunity to see some of the projects we've gotten started through to completion.
What are the most important issues on your campaign? As I noted above, as the County's tax collector I think it's very important that we set a good example of stewardship and transparency. In addition to the things I've already mentioned, we have implemented a new policy that pursues delinquent taxpayers based on how much they owe and for how long they have been delinquent, which helps us do that important work more fairly and evenhandedly than we have been able to in the past. My office also plays an important role in managing the work of the Portage County Land Bank, which returns blighted and unsafe properties to productive use. Maximizing the return on our County's investment in that entity will be a focus of mine going forward.
Give us a fun fact about yourself. Most people don't know that, at Hiram College, I was a very active singer in our choir, men's quartet, and a medieval chamber music group called the Madrigals. While I don't do much organized singing anymore, if you pull up next to me in traffic you're very likely to catch me belting out Billy Joel or Garth Brooks songs along with the radio.
Who is your favorite president? Why? This is a difficult choice for me, because I admire so many - from both parties - for many different reasons. On balance, though, I would have to say that my favorite President is Franklin Delano Roosevelt. His administration set in motion many of the protections and programs we enjoy today, and his Second Bill of Rights speech - where he called for rights to health care, honest work, and access to education - continues to set a high bar for us today.
What's your favorite food on the campaign trail? Why? It's boring, but you can't beat a good old granola bar for a boost of long-lasting energy. If I'm at the Fair, though, it's got to be the porktato (I'm a huge barbeque fan, so this one's an easy guilty pleasure).
If you could be a superhero, who would you be? Why? My go-to here is Captain America, for obvious reasons. Outside of the Captain, I've always admired Professor X for his ability to lead and his incredible intellect.
If you were a professional athlete, what song would you chose to be your "walk out" song? Going back to Garth for this one - "Standing Outside the Fire." It's upbeat, and the message that you have to risk getting burned to have really tried in life resonates with me.
What was your first paid job? My very first job was serving as a janitor at my church growing up. There's no better way to earn respect for working people than spending your time cleaning up after others.
How can Young Dems help in your race? In my race, the most helpful thing the Young Dems can do is support our local coordinated campaign (there are a number of other young, energetic Democratic office seekers in Portage County). We've got a number of dates on the calendar for joint canvasses and other activities, so if you're interested in lending a hand please contact our President Chris Clevenger. If you can't make it here, work hard for candidates you feel passionately about in your area, and whatever you do - VOTE!
Want to help out Brad's campaign? Join us as we canvass for Brad after our OYD Meeting on Saturday, October 29, 2016! Get the details and RSVP here.