Candidates lining up to vie for county clerk/auditor role

Would-be replacements for retired Cache County Clerk/Auditor Jill Zollinger began filling their candidacy with County GOP Chair Chris Booth on Sept. 1.

CACHE COUNTY – Cache GOP Chairman Chris Booth says he won’t announce candidates who have filed to replace retired Clerk/Auditor Jill Zollinger until Sept. 11, but some candidates aren’t staying mum in the meantime.

“I am running on a platform that promises increased process modernization for business licenses, records and other clerk responsibilities,” said Jess Bradfield while announcing his candidacy on Sept. 5.

Bradfield is a member of the Logan City Council, where he has developed a reputation for speaking his mind.

“As a member of Logan’s city council, I have demonstrated a record of pushing for better elections and more representation,” he added. “If elected, I will continue to ensure that resident voices are heard and the best processes are implement for Cache County.”

Dianna Schaeffer, the county’s deputy chief auditor, has also tossed her hat into the ring.

Schaeffer said that she decided to file for the clerk/auditor position under the local Republican Party’s rules because “ … there is a great deal of concern and worry in our office regarding the possibility of an unqualified individual being appointed to suit special interests without regard to their qualifications or their ability to lead our team.”

As yet unconfirmed rumors are circulating about other possible candidates. Cache County Council member Gina Worthen was quick to squash one of those whispers.

“Yeah, that’s just a rumor,” Worthen said Sept 1. “I have no idea where it came from. I keep hearing it, too. But I am not looking to run for the (clerk/auditor) seat.”

Bradfield’s background includes experience as a human resources manager for major employers like Boeing, JBS and ThermoFisher Scientific.

“I am a dedicated conservative and I look forward to implementing new ideas and serving as an advocate for Cache County,” Bradfield emphasized. “Additionally, residents will be allowed to choose between in-person and mail-in voting options, rather than a one-size fits all approach.”

Schaeffer described herself as “ … self-motivated, detail-oriented, analytic problem-solver with 11 years of service to Cache County in the Auditor’s Office.”

A graduate of Utah State University, Schaeffer’s previous experience includes work as a project/office manager and internal auditor for local enterprises including Moore Business Forms and Triple L Marketing.

“I feel confident that my education and experience have provided me with the skills necessary to effectively carry out the responsibilities of this position,” she added. “My technical abilities, understanding of law, office skills and personality traits all make me a strong fit.”

After 31 years in the County Clerk’s office, Zollinger abruptly retired Aug. 31, midway through a term of office ending in 2022. That decision allows the county GOP to nominate a replacement to serve out Zollinger’s unexpired term.

Booth said that the party organization began accepting filing affidavits from perspective candidates Sept. 1 and that the official filing period will close at 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 11.

A special election will then be held to allow the party’s local leaders and precinct officials to select a replacement candidate. That event will be held at 10 a.m. at Ridgeline High School on Saturday, Sept 19.

The name of the party’s nominee to serve as interim clerk/auditor until 2022 will hopefully be forwarded to the Cache County Council prior to their regularly scheduled meeting on Sept. 22, Booth added.

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