Dave Stegmaier

David Stegmaier

WINCHESTER — Shawnee District Supervisor David Stegmaier announced Monday he is seeking the Republican nomination to run for his seat on the Frederick County Board of Supervisors in the November election.

Stegmaier, 73, was elected to the board in November to fill the unexpired term of Shannon Trout, who moved out of the area. The term expires at the end of 2021.

Stegmaier is being challenged for the Republican nomination by aerospace engineer Josh Ludgwig, who has accused Stegmaier of not being a true conservative and not keeping his campaign promise to keep taxes low.

Stegmaier refuted those claims.

“I believe that I have kept my promise to be diligent and fair-minded, prioritizing improvements in our public safety system and our education system while keeping our taxes low,” Stegmaier said.

During his brief time on the board, some of the actions that he considers a success include: supporting a $72.8 million renovation of James Wood High School and a $12 million renovation of Indian Hollow Elementary School; supporting the establishment of an amphitheater behind the Bowman Library; introducing and passing a resolution in support of 33rd District Del. Dave LaRock, R-Hamilton, and urging Virginia House of Delegates Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn (D) to reinstate LaRock to the House’s Transportation Committee. Filler-Corn stripped LaRock of his committee assignment because he signed a letter urging former Vice President Mike Pence to nullify Virginia’s certified presidential election results. Stegmaier said that by removing LaRock from the Transportation Committee, Filler-Corn was “denying us a voice on a very important subject of transportation policy.”

Stegmaier said he also got the other supervisors to adopt in their list of General Assembly legislative priorities a statement opposing the legalization of marijuana in Virginia.

“Unfortunately, our message fell on deaf ears,” Stegmaier said.

During the recently completed legislative session, the General Assembly approved legalizing marijuana for adult recreational use starting in 2024.

Stegmaier said he hopes to ease some tensions that have been brewing in recent months among the supervisors as well as tensions that have been building between the supervisors and the Frederick County School Board.

“My greatest disappointment has been the disrespect and adversarial atmosphere that exists on the Board of Supervisors,” Stegmaier said. “Anyone who has attended a recent board meeting or has watched the meetings on television knows exactly what I am talking about. The disrespectful attitude that even extends to the way our chairman is sometimes treated and county employees are sometimes treated is truly an embarrassment to those who live in Frederick County. There exists a code of conduct that board members adopt each January and based on what is transpiring, this code of conduct is not being followed.”

Although Stegmaier said he was partially referring to some tense public exchanges between Back Creek District Supervisor Shawn Graber and Board of Supervisors Chairman Charles DeHaven Jr., he indicated that, in general, there hasn’t been “a proper deference to the chairman” lately.

Stegmaier added that he has heard comments from county employees who have been lambasted and threatened by a Board of Supervisors member, whom he declined to name.

“I think the problem is there are others who are connected with that supervisor who could bring that supervisor under greater control,” Stegmaier said. “And there seems to be no desire to do that.”

Stegmaier said “this lack of civility” surfaced on Feb. 27 when he attended a gathering at the home of Rani and Josh Ludwig — his political opponent — to learn about the school division’s Deep Equity program. Stegmaier said while at the Ludwig house, several people present called him a liar and accused him of not being a true conservative. Stegmaier said one person hurled a profanity at him.

“This ugly episode is an indication that we have lost sight of our responsibility to treat each other with civility and respect,” Stegmaier said.

Stegmaier said voters should choose him over Ludwig because he brings “a depth of experience and responsibility.”

“I have proven myself as a diligent and fair-minded leader in the community,” Stegmaier said. “My opponent, while casting aspersions, does not have the proven record of involvement, commitment and accomplishment.”

Stegmaier maintains that he is more upfront than Ludwig, despite Ludwig criticizing Stegmaier for not doing more to push for transparency in budget matters. Stegmaier also believes he conducts himself in a respectful way and that Ludwig “clearly does not have the same commitment to treating others with respect.”

Stegmaier previously served as director of community outreach for former Republican 10th District Reps. Barbara Comstock and Frank Wolf, from 2015-19 and 2011-15, respectively. From 1988 to 2000, he served in the Hawaii state legislature as a Democrat.

He has also served on the board of directors of Highland Food Pantry, the board of directors of Shenandoah Valley Community Residences, the public policy committee of the Top of Virginia Regional Chamber, the Northern Shenandoah Valley Substance Abuse Coalition and been a mentor with Frederick County Bright Futures Program.

Moving forward, Stegmaier plans to push to replace the county’s public safety radio system, renovate Armel Elementary School and ensure that traffic impacts are taken care of before the county rezones 277 acres for industrial use near Winchester Regional Airport.

The Frederick County Republican Committee currently plans to hold a party canvass to select the Republican nominees on May 8.

— Contact Josh Janney at jjanney@winchesterstar.com

(17) comments

john brown

look at ole smiley ... the face of ___________?

GreaterThanScott

I remember recently seeing the troll john brown calling someone else on this forum a 'bigot'

Doc Samson

@Steve - The Left always projects their prejudice, fears, mental illness, Hollywood fantasies, etc. onto everyone else. They are literally unable to comprehend anything else...

DavidSparkman

I did attend the meeting Supervisor Stegmaier speaks about. At no time did Josh Ludwig speak. He was a quiet observer. His wife Rani Ludwig spoke out strongly against the Deep Equity. I did not hear the profanity Stegmaier references. It may have been a personal exchange, but not part of the meeting. Deep Equity is about seeing racism behind every tree and under every rock and in every Dr. Seuss Book. It is not good for our children. Besides they need to be learning school things, not political things.

WahooCavaliers

Wow... You're awful mobile for your age. Riots in January, meeting at Glory Days pimping for a new failure of a gubernatorial candidate, now attending meetings that may have broken the law....

GreaterThanScott

Another anonymous troll who likes to call others 'bigots' and then shows up here showing their very own bigotry's towards someone with different views.

Doc Samson

@Steve - It's Bryan "Only I'm Worthy of Anonymity" Nuri. Notice he has stopped whining about that since adopting his Woohoo persona?

WahooCavaliers

@Doc, you see Nuri hiding behind every blade of grass, don't you? He lives rent-free in your mind.

shinyhappypeople

What are his thoughts on sedition, and was he present at the Caldwell home meeting???

RightSide

When I email my Supervisor, I need a reply. Period.

WahooCavaliers

You dont even live here.

GreaterThanScott

I know right?!? Still waiting for several replies from my School Board representative

RightSide

I supported and voted for Stegmaier. Now I see I was mistaken that he would be part of the solution. It's business as usual. He is Gene Fisher the Second. I emailed him and crickets...Shawnee can do much better that this. Nobody needs to "control" Graber. What we need are more like minded Supervisors. You were supposed to be one.

WahooCavaliers

No, you didnt.

ginamcintire

“My greatest disappointment has been the greatest disrespect.....” did he really say greatest twice or is this a case of poor proof reading and/or regurgitating the facts?

RightSide

That's called double speak. As your taxes go up....

GreaterThanScott

Well Josh Janey did write this article......so....

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.