A new challenger has entered the race for the third district seat on the Riley County Commission.
Manhattan businesswoman and civic worker Kathryn Focke announced Wednesday she’s seeking the seat currently occupied by Republican incumbent Ron Wells. Focke is running as a Democrat.
Focke said in a news release she plans to initiate a grassroots listening tour to identify issues most concerning to county residents. She says believes in a long-range plan for future expansion, looking 20 years out and engaging citizen discussion in that plan. She says targeted economic development, improvement of county infrastructure and rising property tax rates are among the county’s most pressing issues and she wants to increase citizen participation in county government.
Focke has 34 years of design and construction experience as a business owner and consultant. She opened a kitchen and bath showroom in downtown Manhattan in 2004 and has held positions on the Downtown Manhattan Advisory Board and Downtown Business Association.
She also has served 13 years as the Riley County Democratic party chair and worked on campaigns for Governors Kathleen Sebelius and Laura Kelly.