Daniel Rickord
Daniel Rickord

DECATUR, Ind. – An appeal by Democrat Daniel Rickord, Decatur, became a determining factor during Tuesday’s election when Rickord unseated Decatur incumbent mayor, Republican Ken Meyer. When all votes were counted, Rickord had posted a 1,256 to 928 win over Meyer in our neighboring city.

In a public hearing on Aug. 13, Adams County GOP chairman Gerald Walker claimed that Rickord was ineligible because he and the county Democratic Party did not meet the state’s June 30 deadline for filing ballot vacancies for the Nov. 5 generation program. The election board, made up of two Republicans and one Democrat, supported Walker’s claim and declared Rickord ineligible for the ballot.

However, Rickord appealed the decision and Wells County Special Judge Andrew Antrim ruled that the Adams County Election Board ruled in error when it disqualified Rickord from running for the Democrat seat for mayor of Decatur against the incumbent, Meyer.

“The court finds that the decision of the Adams County Election Board was in error, that the decision is reversed and the court finds that the appellant, Daniel Rickord, is eligible as a candidate for the office of the Mayor of Decatur in the Nov.5, 2019, general and municipal election,” ruled Antrim at the time.

Rickord appealed the ruling and on Sept, 26, a hearing was held in the Wells Superior Court on a Special Judge case. Rickord was represented by Joseph Johnson II, while Cory Sprunger represented the election board and Eric Orr represented Walker.

“Nobody cares more about this city than I do,” said Rickord following the election. “We have a great city council and great city employees. A lot of wonderful groundwork has already been laid. We want to keep things moving in the right direction.

“I’ve always had a real love for this city,” continued Rickord. “When I was in college, I was the only person in a house of 60 people that had a local newspaper sent. In the job I work now, I visit over 60 cities and towns. I continually talk about Decatur.”

Rickord graduated from Bellmont High School in 1992 and Indiana University, where he received a degree in kinesiology, in 1996.

Rickord said that he originally intended to go into chiropractic type work but changed paths and got a Masters Degree in Business Administration. These days he sells water infrastructure supplies in cities and towns across northeast Indiana and northwest Ohio. In addition, he served as the Director of Utilities for the city of Decatur for seven and a half years.

“I served on the Board of Zoning Appeals and Planning Commission under Mayor John Schultz,” said Rickord. “I always really appreciated him.”

Rickord and his wife, Tera, have been married for 20 years. They have two children, daughter, Megan, a senior at Bellmont, and son, Bryce, a freshman at Bellmont.

One of Rickord’s new passions as mayor is to extend the trail system throughout the city. He said that the city’s trail system is somewhat bunched up in one area and he would like to see other people in the city have access to a trail system.