Hess seeking County Commissioner Position No. 3
By KAYLA CAMENZIND
I have lived in Raymond for the past 17 years. I have been married to my wife Karen and part of the Flemetis family for over 25 years. I have lived in Raymond since 1997.
I was born in Ohio and joined the US Marine Corps right out of high school. I completed my term in the Marine Corps then enlisted in the US Army and was stationed at Fort Lewis. At Fort Lewis I was able to attend college courses. These courses included criminal justice, construction and accounting. During this time I was able to attend multiple courses for small business. All of my experiences in the armed forces as well as the college courses were able to help me obtain my dream of owning and operating a general construction company.
What is your professional experience?
Through drive and determination I was able to open both a drywall business and a painting business. During this time I was able to utilize 31 employees. Our work took us from a Victorian home in Steilacoom to a 40 unit condo at Mt. Hyak to a 400 units at Bangor Navel Operations. Later, I was able to take on a new venture with a friend and we provided both drywall and painting services exclusively to commercial businesses. Our workers were trained by me or one of three foremen that I supervised. My job duties as the owner included bidding jobs, material orders, material deliveries, developing spreadsheets, billing and city/state/federal business taxes. I also made contacts throughout the week with customers, material agents, sub contractors, inspectors and bonding agents. My guarantee, references and quality satisfied the customers even if my bid was not the lowest.
In 1998 I started with Pacific County Sheriff’s Office as a corrections officer and continued running the business from Raymond until around 2003. I would finish my graveyard shift at the jail and work over the weekend at the construction business. This continued for 5 years until I decided to commit myself full time to PCSO and I’ve never looked back.
Specifically, what experiences have you had to prepare you for this office?
My experience from owning my own successful business has prepared me for this office. I have not only the educational background but I have the working knowledge of how to run a successful and profitable business. I have the commitment, not only to hard work in general but to this county as demonstrated through the past 16 years of working for Pacific County Sheriff's Office..
Why are you running for commissioner?
I feel comfortable in my abilities and leadership skills I have developed through leadership positions I have held in the past. I feel that the different positions I have held have prepared me for the office of commissioner. I’ve been an instructor in the military, provided jobs for my employees that in turn provided a good life style for my employees and their families or worked with 30 – 50 inmates at the jail. During my time in the jail I have learned to focus on the task at hand while keeping the safety of fellow officers, inmates and citizens of this county on my mind at all times.
What changes will you implement if elected?
Monthly community forums for my full 4 year term. I would be open, available and transparent to the citizens of Pacific County from the beginning. I would give attention to detail and the needs of all citizens I represent. I would not take for granted the fact that I was elected not only to lead this county but to serve this county. I would make sure that absolutely every department within the county knew that I do not and will not favor any single department over another.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I always have and always will be available to assist with any task I’m called on to perform. I have lived my entire life by the phrase “lead by example.” I will always keep that as my foundation as your commissioner. It is easy to claim to be a leader but it is harder when “it hits the fan.” That is when you and your people find out if you can or cannot lead them. I’ve been able to lead my people out of some big predicaments.
One thing I have noticed in different leaders that I have met in the military, personal business or in the jail is there respect for the people they serve. I respect the people of Pacific County and look forward to serving you as commissioner.