Primary race shapes up in Clallam County

PORT ANGELES — Candidate filing week for the Nov. 7 general election continued Tuesday as the first Aug. 1 primary election emerged and the first candidate filed for Forks Mayor Bryon Monohon’s soon-to-be-vacant, nonpaying position.

Ken Ayers, appointed Feb. 8, 2016, to the Forks City Council Position 4 seat held by Kevin Hinchen, filed Tuesday for the position held for two four-year terms by Monohon, who is not running for re-election after 14 years on the council.

“It’s time to pursue other interests in life,” Monohon said Tuesday.

Monohon, a Quillayute Valley School District substitute teacher who recently earned his master’s degree in math education, said he expects more candidates to file for the “strong-mayor” position he holds, which does not pay a stipend or salary and which includes hiring city staff and presenting an annual budget to the city council.

Incumbent Port Angeles-area Fire District No. 2 Position 1 Commissioner Tom Martin also filed for re-election to his six-year seat.

He will join at least candidates Allen Hunt and Nick Gear in the Aug. 1 primary election.

The top two vote-getters in the primary automatically advance to the Nov. 7 general election.

Forty-six offices are up for election in Clallam County.

Candidates can file their declarations of candidacy at the county auditor’s office from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through Friday at the county courthouse, 223 E. Fourth St., Port Angeles.

They also can file online 24 hours a day through 4 p.m. Friday at

Regardless of how they file, candidates must pay filing fees in person or mail the fees to the auditor’s office so they are received by 4:30 p.m. Friday.

Contested candidacies also surfaced Tuesday for the Joyce-area Crescent School Board.

Kathy Conat filed against incumbent Position 1 school board member Ann Chang, and Lee Evinger and Amanda Jennings filed for the Position 2 seat of incumbent Sandra Criss, who could not be reached for comment on her electoral intentions.

Annajo “A.J.” Hitchcock filed for the Clallam County Park and Recreation District 1 commissioner Position 1 seat held by incumbent Sherry Nagel, who is not running for re-election and under whose tenure facility management has been turned over to the Olympic Peninsula YMCA.

Nagel said Tuesday she sought out Hitchcock to run for the position.

Nagel endorsed Hitchcock for the board of commissioners for what was known as the Sequim Aquatic Recreation Center and is now called the Sequim YMCA.

“I’ve accomplished what I set out to do,” Nagel said Tuesday.

Other Tuesday filings for the Nov. 7 election for races that so far are uncontested include Port of Port Angeles commissioner, Colleen McAleer; Forks City Council, John Hillcar; Port Angeles City Council, Travis Berglund; and Jodi Riker, Forks-area Clallam County Fire District 1.

The Fire District 1 seat is held by Miles Lawson, who could not be reached Tuesday for comment.

There are four positions each up for election on the seven-seat Port Angeles, Sequim and Forks city councils and two up for election on the countywide Port of Port Angeles board of commissioners.

There also are positions on Forks Hospital District 1 board of commissioners, the Cape Flattery and Quillayute Valley school district boards, Clallam County Fire Districts 1-6 and county Park and Recreation District 1.

Seats also are up for election on the West End-area Quillayute Park and Recreation District board and the Sequim-area Sunland Water District board.

The list of offices open for election and current office holders is available at

A listing of candidates who have filed for the election through Tuesday is at


Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 55650, or at