Tom Kress takes the lead in tight Douglas County Commissioner race

Kress said he wants to see new opportunities for trade schools.

Posted: Nov. 6, 2018 10:18 PM

DOUGLAS COUNTY -- Tom Kress is taking the lead in the crowded race for a Douglas County commissioner seat with candidate Alek Skarlatos coming in a close second Tuesday night.

Kress has received 38 percent of the vote. Skarlatos, who is known for helping thwart a terrorist attack on a train to Paris in 2015, received 35 percent, as of 10 p.m.

The other six competitors in the race took a combined 27 percent, with no one candidate receiving more than 7 percent of the vote.

"I feel like I have been training my entire life for this position,” Kress said during his campaign.

Kress said he wants to see new opportunities for trade schools.

“We have a workforce problem. We’ve exported our youth out of the area for the last 25 years,” Kress said.

He added that the county needs to start promoting the option of trade school to students at the middle school level.

“We can train them locally and they can get family wage jobs right here if we can improve our trade education,” Kress said.

Kress, who was born and raised in Roseburg, said he’s very passionate about the community.

He graduated from the University of Oregon with a business degree and has been a small business owner in Roseburg for 30 years. For the past 17, Kress and his wife have owned Waldron’s Outdoor Sports.

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