Republicans pick Joanne Rohrig to become new city clerk

The city’s Republicans have chosen former Board of Education Minority Leader Joanne Rohrig to become city clerk, and the Democrats said they won’t challenge that decision.

Rohrig will fill the unexpired term of Linda Stock, who died in May.

“We had six excellent candidates come forward to seek the honor of serving the people of Milford as our city clerk,” said Republican Town Committee Chairman Paul Beckwith. “Joanne came out of our process as the party's choice to continue the excellent work started by Linda and her team 4.5 years ago.”

Beckwith said Rohrig has been a leader in the community for many years, not only as a member of the Board of Education but also in her work with the Jonathan Law Sports Association, the Annual Milford Oyster Festival Committee, Milford Little League, Milford Pop Warner football program and the United Way.

“She has a passion to want to give back to Milford and to serve the people of our great city,” Beckwith said. “I am confident that Joanne will continue to build on the work started by Linda and will continue to make the city clerk’s office a warm, friendly and helpful place to visit.”

Rohrig was nominated by former alderman, and sister of Linda Stock, Paula Smith.

Rich Smith, Democratic Town Committee chairman, said the Democrats could have challenged the GOP choice but did not.

Linda Stock’s replacement has to be a Republican, but Smith said that since the Democrats have the majority vote on the Board of Aldermen, they could have picked a candidate of their choosing.

The aldermen must vote to approve Linda Stock’s replacement, Smith said.

“But this is a time-honored tradition and, out of respect, we will support their decision,” Smith said. “Joanne is a good choice and I think she will do a good job.”

The aldermen are expected to vote on the matter July 7 during the monthly Board of Aldermen’s meeting.

Linda Stock died May 24 after battling cancer. She was very well liked in the community and served the city for a number of years and in a number of capacities. She started in 1990 as a clerk in the Planning and Zoning office, moved on to secretary, then administrative assistant to the city planner, and finally became the zoning enforcement officer in 1997. She decided to run for office and became the city clerk in 2009.

She was also involved in a number of civic groups, including the Annual Milford Oyster Festival Committee.

Rohrig said several people approached her about seeking the position, and at first she hesitated because she was good friends with Linda Stock.

But after talking to Linda Stock’s family members and getting their blessing, she said she decided to go for the post.

“I’m looking forward to carrying on her work and trying to fill her shoes,” Rohrig said, adding that she will run again for re-election when the term ends.

Rohrig said she has researched the job responsibilities and met with the office staff to learn more about the daily operations. She said the city clerk’s staff is a “great crew” and she looks forward to learning from them and working with them.

“I’m very excited, and I’m proud to be selected by my Republican Town Committee. I’m looking forward to serving and giving back to Milford because it has given so much to me,” Rohrig said.