Johnson County Supervisor Candidate Jon Green holds campaign rally

Local Johnson County Democrats met at Upper City Park on Saturday to “get the vote out” for the Johnson County Supervisors special election on June 8.


Sabine Martin

Johnson County residents Tom and Joan Cook speak to Johnson County Supervisor Candidate Jon Green at Green’s campaign rally on May 22.

Sabine Martin, News Editor

Supporters and volunteers for Jon Green, the Democratic candidate for the Johnson County supervisor special election, gathered at Upper City Park Saturday evening to “get the vote out.”

Three candidates will run in Johnson County’s special election on June 8 to fill the vacant supervisor seat. The position was vacated by Janelle Rettig, who resigned after a decade of service.

  • Jon Green, Democrat
  • Phil Hemingway, Republican
  • Brian Campbell, Independent

Green said some Johnson County residents his campaign team has reached out to had no idea of the upcoming special election. Green said his campaign hopes to receive about 6,000 to 7,000 votes.

“Phil Hemingway is going to have 4,000 people plus or minus vote for him,” Green said. “That’s one thing that Republicans are good about. They always show out, show up for every election. So, we just need to make sure that we activate.”

As previously reported by The Daily Iowan, a Republican hasn’t been elected to the Board of Supervisors since 2013. Republican John Etheredge won the race by less than 200 votes in a special election that year.

Green was the mayor of Lone Tree, Iowa, a city of about 1,300, from 2018-2019. He said by living in a rural community, he has a different background than other supervisors on the Board.

“It’s just helpful for folks to see somebody who looks like them, that lives where they do,” said Green, who wore his trademark cowboy hat at Saturday’s campaign rally.

RELATED: Candidates line up in Johnson County Board of Supervisors race

Mike Carberry, a former Johnson County Supervisor from 2014-2019, said Green is going to advocate for the people in Johnson County who are struggling to stay afloat, so they don’t get left behind.

“And one of the things about Johnson County, and this is a very affluent county, but we have a very high incidence of poverty. We also have a high incidence of hunger and it got worse during the pandemic.”

Johnson County will receive about $29 million in COVID-19 relief funds from the American Rescue Plan.

Carberry said Green wants to see that the distribution of the $29 million from the American Rescue Plan goes to the most vulnerable in the county.

“If he’s a supervisor, he’s going to be pushing that agenda,” Carberry said.

United States Census Bureau data from 2019 estimates 16 percent of Johnson County residents live in poverty.

Coralville City Council Member Meghann Foster, who ran against Green for the Johnson County Supervisors Democratic nomination, said there is an urgency of making sure Green is elected to the Board of Supervisors to continue to elect strong, progressive leaders at the local level in the county.

“We know that Jon is more than up to the challenge,” Foster said.