A Butler Township resident has been chosen as the Republican candidate in the race to replace former State Rep. Brian Ellis in the 11th legislative district in a special election coming up in less than two months.
Marci Mustello, 48, was the choice on a majority of the 31 ballots cast by Butler County Republican Committee members on Wednesday night following speeches by seven total candidates who received nominations. Nearly a dozen Republicans applied to be considered, but only applicants who received a nomination from a committee member from the 11th district and a second from a second member were eligible to be voted on.
The seven who received nominations were Gregory Walter, Mustello, Tiffany Keffalas, Shawn Denham, Ryan Covert, Amy Reynolds and Suzie Bradrick.
Mustello points to her extensive professional experience and her lifelong dedication to the residents of Butler County as reasons why she will be a good fit for the position.
“For the past 20 years I’ve been serving the community in various roles- whether it’s volunteer work or through my work with U.S. Rep. Mike Kelly,” Mustello said. “This will just take it one step further where I can go to Harrisburg and fight for what needs to be brought back to our district.”
Mustello has spent the last eight years working as a liaison between U.S. Representative Mike Kelly and community and business leaders, as well as local, state and federal government offices around the county. She manages Rep. Kelly’s schedule and represents him at events in the county.
Mustello will now go up against Democrat Sam Doctor- a crane operator at AK Steel- in the special election, which will be held during this May’s primary election.
Ellis had held the seat since 2004 before resigning last week amid sexual assault allegations.
District 11 includes Connoquenessing, Butler, Summit, Saxonburg, Fairview, Donegal, Clearfield and Oakland townships.