Cornell, Independence leader stress non-partisan, professional approach to County Clerk’s Office

JAMESTOWN – Chautauqua County Clerk Candidate Lori Cornell recently joined Independence Party Chair Thom Shagla in stressing the importance of a non-partisan, professional approach to the County Clerk’s Office and highlighted her experience and qualifications for the important office.

“The County Clerk’s Office is about superior customer service, innovation, and providing service at the lowest possible cost,” Cornell said. “It’s not about Democratic or Republican leadership, it’s about strong administrative leadership and who has the qualifications and experience to deliver the optimal service at the lowest possible cost, and use ever evolving technology to better serve the public.”

“A lot of people don’t understand the County Clerk’s Office and what it does, and does not do,” said County Independence Chair Thom Shagla. “It is not a political office and requires someone who is qualified to lead the office, both in their education and professional experience, and non-partisan approach. That’s why we Independents endorsed Lori Cornell. As a former candidate for this office myself, I can tell you that Lori Cornell is the most qualified, experienced and level headed candidate for the job.”

As a county legislator, Cornell led the effort to form a non-partisan commission to redraw county legislature districts. The effort led to the formation of an independent commission that produced a non-partisan redistricting proposal. The independent proposal ultimately failed and a partisan plan, referred to by Shagla as the “Barmore Plan,” was approved without Cornell’s support.

“Lori Cornell’s leadership in creating a non-partisan approach to the long time tradition of partisan political gerrymandering shows which of the choices before the voters this fall has the leadership skills and disposition for County Clerk,” Shagla added.

As a county legislator, Cornell also worked to improve declining housing in the county. She has been a longtime advocate for reducing the size of the county legislature to 15 or less, and has consistently opposed spending and tax increases. Cornell was a candidate for County Clerk eight years ago running on the Independence Party line after winning the primary election. Shagla added that both the downsizing of the county legislature and the non-partisan independent commission for redistricting where initiatives supported by the County Independence Party.

In addition to serving nearly two terms in the County Legislature, Cornell has held full-time professional and management positions in municipal, county, state and federal government. Also, over the last two years, she has assisted small businesses in marketing and sales in a consulting capacity. She has also served as an adjunct faculty member at Jamestown Community College. Cornell received her master’s degree from the St. Bonaventure University School of Business and her Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Notre Dame, where she was accepted into the Hesburgh Honors Program. She is a graduate of Dunkirk High School.

Cornell is serving her second term in the Chautauqua County Legislature representing the north side of Jamestown. She is not running for a third term in order to seek the office of Chautauqua County Clerk.

A Dunkirk native, Cornell resides in Jamestown where she has been actively involved in the Jamestown Schools PTA, Babe Ruth baseball, American Association of University Women, League of Women Voters, Business and Professional Women and Mothers of Preschools. Her board service has included the Chautauqua County Land Bank, Family Service of the Chautauqua Region, Kiwanis Club, Housing Authority and Jamestown Property Rehabilitation. She received the Woman of Achievement award from the YWCA this year.