Dave Domas was elected to serve as Chairman of the Livingston County Board of Commissioners.
The Board put forth three candidates for consideration: Domas, Jay Gross, and incumbent Chair Wes Nakagiri. Domas received the five votes necessary for the appointment, while Nakagiri and Gross each received two. Votes for the chair were cast as secret ballots. Votes for co-chair, however, are not permitted by Michigan law to be conducted in secret. Domas nominated Jay Drick as co-chair, and the motion was met with unanimous approval from the Board.
Domas previously served on the Board of Commissioners from 1993-2002, taking a break in order to pursue a seat in the Michigan House of Representatives. This campaign proved unsuccessful, and Domas returned to the Board in 2005. He decided against running for re-election in 2018, endorsing Wes Nakagiri in the race for what was then the 3rd District. Domas defeated incumbent Carol Sue Reader in the 2022 Republican Primary, as well as his Democratic challenger Lisa Wojciechowski in the November general election.
Domas represents the newly redrawn 2nd District, representing all of Tyrone and Deerfield Townships, as well as a portion of Oceola.
Public comments were minimal, with only three speakers addressing the appointment. Stacy Farrell was among those who advocated for a change in leadership, noting that the Board of Commissioners has “created an adversarial environment that attempts to pit county employees against the public in a sort of McCarthyism that breeds dissension, distrust, and acrimony.”
Former Commissioner Brenda Plank explained that “good leaders possess self-awareness, garner credibility, focus on relationship building… and become constant and consistent.” She also elaborated that, in naming a Chair and Vice Chair, the Commissioners should examine these qualities, as compared to simply appointing “a buddy or a member of the ‘good old boys club.'”
While the Board elected a different–if not entirely new– leader, Domas’ philosophies are very much aligned with those of Nakagiri. The full extent of Domas’ leadership capabilities and any impact they might have remain to be seen.