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New Avon councilman calls Foltin an 'inspiration'


AVON - For the next two months, residents in Avon`s 3rd Ward will be represented by an eight-year Avon resident who applied to fill the seat left vacant by the late Councilman Timothy Nickum.

Mark Yonchak, 41, an information technology security manager for Lincoln Electric, calls former Lorain Mayor Craig Foltin the inspiration that led him to submit his name.

Yonchak is completing a master`s program in accounting at Cleveland State University and recently had Foltin as an instructor.

During the class, which focused on government finance, Yonchak said he garnered an appreciation for the inner workings of city government.

"I`m very excited about this opportunity," he said. "In the next two months, I plan to get acquainted with the local issues. My only goal is to do my best to serve the people of Avon and the residents of Ward 3."

Yonchak was tapped to fill the position out of a field of four candidates, Council President Clinton Pelfrey said.

"It was not an easy choice to make as each candidate was equally qualified," Pelfrey said. "But as the talks with the candidates continued a comfort level evolved, and ultimately (Yonchak) was chosen because there is a feeling among others that he will work very well with the other City Council members and represent the 3rd Ward well."

Yonchak will serve out the remainder of Nickum`s term, ending Dec 31.

Nickum, 65, represented Avon`s 3rd Ward for eight years and lost a seven-year struggle with leukemia last month.

He was running unopposed in Tuesday`s election; however his death came after the deadline that would allow anyone to join the race as a write-in candidate. As such, Council had to appoint a successor.

The process will repeat itself in January when a replacement for the upcoming two-year term is sought. Pelfrey said the successor likely will be Yonchak.

Yonchak will be sworn in Monday before the Council meeting.

Yonchak lives in the city with wife, Danielle, and sons, Jacob, 7, and Nick, 5.

Contact Lisa Roberson at 653-6268 or

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