Washougal council to meet 7 applicants

A replacement for 6-year councilman Jon Russell may be named Monday




A former city councilman, a lawyer and an Air Force admissions officer are among the seven applicants who filed paperwork seeking Washougal’s city council vacancy, city officials said.

The applicants are competing to fill the seat vacated by longtime councilman Jon Russell, a six-year veteran who resigned to take a job with an anti-abortion organization in Virginia.

At Monday night’s council meeting, the applicants will answer questions from the six seated council members. The council is then expected to name its newest council member, although it is not bound by law to do so Monday.

The council will also nominate and appoint a new mayor pro-tem to replace Russell during Monday night’s meeting at city hall, 1701 C St. The meeting starts at 6 p.m.

“It’s going to be a fun meeting,” Washougal Mayor Sean Guard predicted.

The number of candidates in Washougal’s council races last fall foreshadowed the interest in the council vacancy, he noted. Each council race had at least one challenger, with three of the four having two or more challengers.

Among the candidates for Russell’s former seat:

• Brent Boger,
Vancouver’s senior assistant city attorney the past 13 years and a Washougal resident since 2003.

• Randall Ellis,
a Riverview Community Bank branch manager with more than 25 years in the banking and financial industry and a Washougal resident since August 2009.

• Rodney Morris,
a 16-year council veteran who lost his reelection bid last fall to Caryn Plinski by eight votes. He is a retired machinist/leadman and has served 33 years as a volunteer firefighter in Washougal.

• Michael Norris,
a retired construction superintendent who has lived in the city 26 years and serves on the Washougal Parks Board.

• Morry Secrest,
a retired engineer who has lived in Washougal 15 years and served on the Washougal Planning Commission from 2000 to 2005.

• Michelle Wagner, a lieutenant colonel in the Air Force who has piloted missions in Iraq and Afghanistan and is an admissions liaison officer, mentoring students considering enrolling in the Air Force Academy. Wagner moved to Washougal two years ago.

• Larry Wagoner, a lifelong Washougal resident who works at the Georgia-Pacific Camas Mill as a process lab technician and serves as a lieutenant in the fire department and on the Washougal Planning Commission.

Ray Legendre: 360-735-4517; http://facebook.com/raylegend; http://twitter.com/col_smallcities; ray.legendre@columbian.com.