Thursday, March 15, 2018

Three women to announce run for Houghton County Commissioner March 17

From Houghton County Democratic Party:

HOUGHTON -- Melissa Davis, Gretchen Janssen, and Dr. Sharon Stoll will announce their candidacies for Houghton County Commissioner, District 2, District 4, and District 5, respectively, at 9 a.m. on Saturday, March 17, 2018, at the Super 8 Conference Room in Houghton, Michigan. All three candidates will run as Democrats in the November 2018 election. The three candidates will be endorsed on March 17 by Scott Dianda, current Michigan State Representative for the 110th district and himself a candidate for the Michigan State Senate, and by other local office holders. This is the first time that three women have run for Houghton County Commissioner seats in the same election year.

Melissa Davis is known in the Houghton County community for her work as the Energy Manager of the Houghton Energy Efficiency Team (HEET). HEET helps residents of Houghton County address the energy issues in the Upper Peninsula and our high electric rates. Davis is also the President of New Power Tour, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to increase the use of renewable, water and energy-efficient technologies in the Copper Country. With the work done by HEET and New Power Tour, which included home winterization and connecting residents to rebates, local residential and business electricity and natural gas usages were decreased by nearly 13 percent each during a two-year period running from 2015 to 2016. For additional information, contact Melissa Davis at

Melissa will use her expertise and her commitment to the community to serve the residents of District 2, which includes Torch Lake, Schoolcraft, Osceola, Franklin, and Quincy Townships. Melissa and her husband are the parents of one son.

Gretchen Janssen has had roots in the City of Houghton since 1968. After graduating from Houghton High School, she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Advertising from Michigan State University and a Master’s in Education from Boston University. She has over 17 years of experience as a real estate professional with RE/MAX Real Estate in Houghton County and the surrounding areas.

Gretchen will apply her experience and knowledge on issues such as zoning, property taxes, and property ownership rights to the Board of Commissioners. Transparency of government is a priority for Gretchen and she welcomes the input of the constituents of District 4 in the City of Houghton on the county-wide issues that affect them.

Dr. Sharon Stoll was born and raised in the Upper Peninsula. After graduating from Northern Michigan University with a Bachelor’s in Human Physiology and Political Science, she went on to medical school at Michigan State and completed her training at the LaCrosse Mayo residency program in 2010. She has been serving the Keweenaw as a physician ever since the day she completed residency. She brings her energy and problem solving abilities, as well as an understanding of the healthcare needs of the community, to find solutions to issues confronting the residents of Houghton County, from the Houghton County Medical Care Facility to the County Jail.

Sharon is passionate about people and looks forward to serving the folks of the rugged and beautiful District 5: Chassell, Duncan, Elm River, Laird, Portage and Stanton Townships. Sharon, a mother of three, is a member of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church and the Red Jacket Cycling Club. She has volunteered in the medical tent at many area sporting events, founded a school garden, and served as a coach with the Copper Country Soccer Association.

(Inset photos of Melissa, Gretchen and Sharon courtesy Houghton County Democratic Party.)

Houghton County Master Plan Favors TEA Party: What you can do about it

Recently, there have been changes that favor TEA party positions in the county Master Plan.

Citizens are encouraged to read the proposed plan and make verbal comments along with submitting written comments at a Planning Commission Meeting at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, March 20, on the 5th Floor of the Houghton County Courthouse.

The plan is available to read online or download by clicking here.

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