DuBOIS — Lifelong DuBois resident and former Mayor John “Herm” Suplizio, who currently serves as the city manager, has announced his intention to seek the Republican nomination for state Senator in the 25th Senatorial District. The post is currently held by Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati, who announced last week that he will not seek re-election at the end of his term on Nov. 30.
“In my time as city manager of DuBois, I’m proud of what we have been able to accomplish,” Suplizio said. “We have made government more efficient, invested in downtown revitalization, brought tourism dollars to support small businesses and we’ve done all of it without a tax increase. I understand how crucial small businesses are to Central Pennsylvania and our families. As state senator, that’s what I’ll fight for – lower taxes, safe streets, small business and smaller government.”
A 1978 graduate of DuBois Central Catholic, Suplizio has spent his entire adult life around public service. Rising from volunteer firefighter to chief of the DuBois Fire Department and executive director of the local United Way since 1993, Suplizio’s impact on DuBois is far-reaching.
As city manager, Suplizio has helped leverage millions of dollars in state grants and private dollars to improve downtown DuBois and incentivize job growth to employers like Danone, a company which just created almost 100 new jobs in Clearfield County.
“We’re doing a lot of great things in DuBois,” Suplizio said. “Stores are opening doors, not closing them. Employers are hiring workers, not laying them off. We’re seeing multimillion-dollar investments into our workforce and a lot of that is due to the fact that DuBois is a great, safe place to raise your family. Just last year, we extended our deal to host the Small College World Series because they recognize the time and investment that our community has put into facilities like Showers Field and our town as a whole. This year, we will also be hosting the 2020 USA Softball Women’s National Team at DuBois’ Heindl Field as part of the “Stand Beside Her” tour presented by Major League Baseball. That’s the experience I want to bring to the Senate – helping to bring more family-sustaining 21st Century jobs and revitalization to communities across the 25th District.”
While excited for the opportunity, Suplizio was quick to acknowledge the fact that the 25th District will be losing a powerful leader in Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati.
“Senator Scarnati has been an outstanding leader and conservative champion in the Senate for two decades,” he said. “I realize that his successor will have tremendous shoes to fill. While I certainly did not anticipate the chance to serve my hometown and the people here that I love, I am committed to advocating for common sense conservative principles in Harrisburg.”
A pro-life, pro-2nd Amendment conservative, Suplizio noted that the freedoms we take for granted are under attack from liberal Democrats and socialist candidates.
“Rural Pennsylvania is under attack from the far left,” he said. “From liberals who look at the 2nd Amendment and right to life as a joke to socialists who want to put a tax on everything in sight, we need a proven leader who isn’t afraid of a fight in Harrisburg. I pledge to you from day one that I will never waver from my conservative principles or our district’s values.”
Suplizio attends St. Catherine’s Catholic Church in DuBois and is a supporter of the Catholic Charities. He also serves as executive director for United Way of DuBois. In addition to the number of local organizations he supports, Suplizio has served as a co-chairman of DuBois Community Days, which brings an influx of tourism and business to the city.
Suplizio is a father of two grown children, Meghan and Timothy.
Also announcing his run for Scarnati’s seat is current state Rep. Cris Dush. Thinking that Scarnati would be running for another term, Dush had started gathering petitions to run for state Auditor General. With Scarnati’s announcement, Dush has told several media outlets that he is dropping his bid for auditor general and will be running for the 25th District Senate seat.
Others seeking the seat include St. Marys resident Margie Brown, a Democrat, and Brockway resident Dr. Jim Brown, a Republican, according to the Bradford Era.