Interviewed Council-at-Large candidates all Salem natives

SALEM – All three of the Salem City Council-At-Large candidates who sat down for one-on-one interviews with the Salem News are Salem natives who have lived here and worked here for most of their lives.

The four candidates running for the three seats include 41-year-old Brian Whitehill, 51-year-old Jeff Cushman, 56-year-old Roy Paparodis and Dan Bailey, whose year of birth is listed as 1982 with the Columbiana County Board of Elections. Bailey did not schedule a candidate interview. Messages had been left for him to call to set one up.

Cushman graduated from Salem High School in 1981 and took vocational drafting while there. He ended up working for the Hunt Valve Waeco division in Salt Lake City, Utah and when he returned home to Salem, he started working at Barclay Machine Inc. on South Broadway Avenue, estimating and detailing drawings.

He graduated with a degree in business administration from Kent State University in 1992 and continued moving through the ranks at Barclay, becoming plant manager and then general manager before buying into the business and becoming a partner in 1997. In 2006, he became the sole owner of the company.

Cushman and his wife, the former Susan Pugh of Salem, reside on Pearce Circle and have two sons, two daughters, one daughter-in-law and a one granddaughter.

A 1976 graduate of Salem High School, Paparodis attended Mercyhurst College in Erie, Pa. and Kent State University before going to work full-time for the family business, Timberlanes, in 1978. He had worked there since childhood doing all types of jobs, from dishwasher and busboy to line cook and bartender and eventually owner/operator.

He sold the business in 2002 and opened Soffo’s Cafe on South Avenue in Boardman in 2003, selling it in 2006. He then served a few years as a business review analyst for U.S. Food Service Company and in sales for a year for La Pari Food Service in the Youngstown market before being hired by Dick and Lindia Sekely as general manager of the Guilford Lake Grille.

He also started up a Facebook group known as Salem Buy Sell or Trade, which he described as an online yard sale.

He and his wife, Theresa, live on Pearce Circle and have a son, two daughters and one grandson.

Whitehill graduated from Salem High School in 1990, attended Bethany College and graduated from Malone University with a bachelor’s degree in organizational management. He also completed the Dale Carnegie Course when it was offered in Salem.

He and his father started Custom Cut Aluminum in 1994 in Salem and sold the business to a large metal service center in 2010. Whitehill remained with the company until it was then sold to a competitor and shut down. He spent nine months in the oil and gas industry at Exterran as materials manager. While with the company, he was part of the management team which opened the manufacturing plant in Youngstown.

More recently, he founded LLC Take Root, working as an independent consultant for business and economic development, bringing him back to working in Salem.

He also plays the drums in the church band at Greenford Christian Church and played in some local bands.

He and his wife, Shannon, live on Tanglewood Drive, in the house where Whitehill grew up. They have a 5-year-old son and 8-year-old daughter.

Bailey reportedly resides on North Lincoln Avenue and owns the business Game On.