Mike Haddle named administrator of Vienna, Ohio, amid fiscal mismanagement

VIENNA TWP., Ohio (WKBN) – The Vienna Township trustees are, as of Tuesday night, a full group of three once again after Mike Haddle was selected among the four people interviewed.

Haddle will now help the other two trustees deal with the loss of $1.3 million of township money, replacing Robert Root, who resigned. Following the vote at Tuesday night’s meeting, Haddle was sworn in.

“Everyone wants solutions right now, but we need to step back in this community and let the audits happen,” Haddle said.

Haddle is from Pennsylvania and has lived in Vienna for 13 years after spending 13 years in the Marine Corps. In 2005, he was wounded by an improvised explosive device while in Iraq — the deciding factor for administrator Phil Pegg.

“He’s ex-military and he’s at the air base,” Pegg said. “For me, I thought this was a clear advantage. He was the only one who had served.”

Vienna Zoning Board member Kim Ellis was one of four people who applied and were interviewed by trustees.

“I also want to see the bank statements,” Ellis said.

The other candidates were former school board member Tarin Brown and Delphi retiree Doug Gollan. All interviews were conducted in public. Trustee Rich Dascenzo Jr. warned them.

“Anyone can come to these meetings where there are 50 to 60 people jumping down our throats, barking up a tree and demanding orders,” Dascenzo said.

Each candidate was asked if they would accept a salary and insurance: they all said “no.”

The interview process lasted about 30 minutes. The discussion to select Haddle lasted about three minutes, with Pegg focusing on his military service.

“With the military background, it’s something we’ve been missing,” Pegg said.

“Because I was in the Marin Corps and we didn’t just sit around. We don’t sit still. If there is a problem in the community, the community needs help and it is not in my nature to just sit back and not move forward,” Haddle said.

Vienna Township Prosecutor Rhonda Root has also resigned. Trustees are accepting applications for her position and hope to have a decision before the end of the month.