Ralph Ansami/Daily Globe
GOGEBIC COUNTY Clerk Gerry Pelissero, right, swears in Tom Laabs of Ironwood as county commission District 2 representative Wednesday.
BESSEMER - Former Ironwood City Commissioner Tom Laabs was appointed to the District 2 seat on the Gogebic County Board of Commissioners Wednesday.
Acting at a special meeting, the board voted 5-1 for Laabs.
Brandon Snyder received his lone vote from board chair Tom Gerovac, of Ironwood.
There were two other candidates for the open position that was created when Dan Siirila moved out of District 2. Dave Ramme and Mike Wiemeri also submitted letters of application, but Wiemeri withdrew from consideration and Ramme didn't attend the meeting.
The names of Snyder, Laabs and Ramme were placed in nomination.
Snyder and Laabs addressed the board.
Laabs cited his 37 years in the construction industry, specializing in day-to-day negotiations, as preparing himself for the commissioner's position.
He said he'd like to work through the current challenges the county board is facing.
Snyder, who has been a public safety officer in Ironwood for the past 11 years, said he had "no ax to grind" and said he would bring "calmness and common sense" to the table. The current fire officer in the department, he said the future of the area "looks promising."
After the board appointed Laabs, it had the task of naming a vice chairman, because Gerovac has assumed the chair's seat.
Joe Bonovetz, of Bessemer, was unanimously chosen vice chair.