Ironton mayor named to OML Board of Trustees

Published 8:19 am Friday, December 28, 2018

Katrina Keith to work with state legislators on policies

Ironton Mayor Katrina Keith has been named to the Ohio Municipal League’s Board of Trustees to represent its 11th District.

In a letter, OML board president and mayor of Sidney Mike Barhorst said that municipal officials are their best ambassadors to work with state officials on policy matters.

There are 22 members on the board, including the mayors and council members of Columbus, Cleveland, Circleville, Centerville and Athens.

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“The board is a congenial group, and I know you will look forward to working with them,” he wrote. “I have learned a great deal from their willingness to share their experiences and value the exchange of ideas that occurs whenever I am with them.”

The board of trustees elects members.

Keith said she was contacted about two weeks ago about joining the board.

“They were looking for diversification and wanted to know if I would lend support to this committee,” she said. “I said sure.”

She said the board stays in contact with the state legislators about advocating for cities and municipalities to make sure they aren’t forgotten.

“I consider this an honor that I can represent southern Ohio,” Keith said. “I think our voice needs to be heard at the state level. So when policies are put in place that they do know the needs of southern Ohio.”

She said that this region has different needs than large urban areas.

“When you look at our area, we don’t have the demographics or the land layout where we have a lot of jobs,” Keith said. “We need to be able to advocate at the state level for them to remember us when they make policies that affect the entire state. Don’t just look at the metropolitan areas like Cincinnati, Columbus or Cleveland. You have to remember your rural areas since we have different issues.”

Members serve on the board for four years.

“So, I may serve a year or I may serve for four,” Keith said. She is up for re-election next year.

She said she hopes to make a mark for southern Ohio.

“I just want to be able to lobby for rural America, for southern Ohio,” Keith said.