“Your Issues are My Issues”

Stephanie Summerow Dumas says she'll work harder for the Republicans who didn't because, "I represent everyone."

The woman who will be the third Democrat on the Hamilton County Board of Commissioners says she will work hard for Democrats who supported her during the campaign. And Stephanie Summerow Dumas says she’ll work harder for the Republicans who didn’t because, “I represent everyone.”

Dumas spoke at the Government Strategies Group luncheon Friday afternoon.

She defeated Republican incumbent Chris Monzel in November by more than 12,000 votes, but says it wasn’t because she had a “D” behind her name on the ballot. She says she received votes not only from Democrats, but from Republicans, independents and Green party voters.

Dumas promises to be a team player but also says she’s not a “normal Democrat” and can work both inside and outside the box. “I look at what’s working now and try to figure out how we can put that together best, and then if we don’t have what we need inside, I go outside.”

Among the issues she singled out for comments:

Transit

Dumas says locally, the equipment is antiquated and accessibility isn’t what it should be. She says she realizes the fixes will cost, but points out suburbs aren’t paying their part.

Job And Family Services

Based on her time as a social worker, she wants to help strengthen families.

Affordable Housing & Homelessness

She likes the idea of a hand-up instead of a hand-out.
Dumas says many of the county’s issues affect one another, so improvement in one area will lead to improvement in others.
“We all want the same thing: life, liberty and happiness. If I can help you get that, that’s what I’m going to do,” she says.

Dumas will take office early next month.

Image: Bill Rinehart, WVXU

Join Our

Mailing List

Sign up for first access to the latest news, updates, and events.

Charles “Chip” Gerhardt

President & CEO

Chip has made government affairs, economic development, and issue advocacy his life’s work. He’s worked for decades in the public and private sectors, and advocated at the local, state, and federal levels of government. In 2007, he used that experience to found Government Strategies Group, a full-service government relations firm. At GSG, he works directly with clients, helping them navigate the complicated intersection of politics, public policy, and business.

In his many years in public policy, Chip has been involved in significant policies including; creation of tax increment financing districts, the Clean Ohio program, Cincinnati City Center Development Corporation, and most importantly, the passage of the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act. He has also been at the forefront of some of the biggest developments in greater Cincinnati, including the Horseshoe (now Hard Rock) Casino, TQL Stadium for FC Cincinnati, parking garage structures at The Banks, and the redevelopment of the @580 building. Rarely is there a public policy endeavor in Cincinnati that does not involve GSG.

Chip received his B.B.A in Marketing from the University of Notre Dame and his Juris Doctor from the St. Louis University School of Law. He lives in Anderson Township with his wife Jane. Son Charlie is a local chef and children Hank and Anne have completed their education and started lives of their own.

Focus areas:

  • State and local government relations
  • Economic development
  • Issue advocacy

Driven by:

  • A lifelong interest in the political system has driven Chip to a career in public policy and politics. As a parent of three, one with down syndrome, has compelled him to promote public policies designed to help others. Whether it is enabling financial independence for people with disabilities, advancing funding for housing families facing homelessness, or assisting with economic development projects, Chip involves himself in things that make a positive difference. 

In the community:

  • Hamilton County Board of Elections member
  • Current Board Member for Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati, People Working Cooperatively, Corporation for Findlay Market, goVibrant, and the African American Chamber of Commerce
  • Former Chairman of the Board for the National Down Syndrome Society
  • Former board member of the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden, the Cincinnati Museum Center, the Cincinnati Metropolitan Housing Authority, the Clermont County Chamber of Commerce, and the Down Syndrome Association of Greater Cincinnati