AUGUSTA — Joseph Pietroski Jr. won the open District 2 Kennebec County commissioner seat Tuesday, becoming the first Republican to serve as a commissioner in more than three decades.

In unofficial results, Pietroski earned 11,445 votes across 14 southern and western Kennebec County towns, while Democrat Charlotte Warren earned 10,253 votes.

“It’s a little bit higher than I predicted,” Pietroski, 75, said Wednesday with a laugh. “I figured I might be a few hundred votes at the most.”

Joseph Pietroski Jr.

Overall, Pietroski, 75, won 10 communities, including Winthrop where he has lived for more than five decades.

Warren, 52,  who is wrapping up her final term as a state representative, won four communities — Hallowell, where she lives; Gardiner, Farmingdale and Wayne.

She posted this statement on Instagram: “Friends, thank you for your support. We knew it would be a tough race and I’m proud of the work we did together. Unfortunately, we came up short. Congratulations Kennebec County Commissioner-elect, Joe Pietroski.”


Pietroski and Warren were vying for the seat being vacated by Nancy Rines, a Democrat from Gardiner who was first elected in 1982.

Pietroski unsuccessfully challenged Rines four years ago. 

“I did exactly what I wanted to do; I just kept out there talking to people and they responded to the message,” said Pietroski, who is completing his final term on the Winthrop School Board.

Both candidates said they would pursue greater transparency in county government if elected.

In Maine, every county elects county commissioners to four-year terms to oversee fiscal operations and policy decisions affecting county government. Kennebec County, founded in 1799, has three county commissioners, each representing about a third of the county, as determined by population. Commissioners also hear municipal tax abatement appeals and hearings on town roads as well as serve as municipal officials in the state’s unorganized territories.

Kennebec County now has a budget of $17.4 million and about 160 employees.

District 2 encompasses Farmingdale, Fayette, Gardiner, Hallowell, Litchfield, Monmouth, Mount Vernon, Pittston, Randolph, Readfield, Vienna, Wayne, West Gardiner and Winthrop.

Commissioners receive an annual salary of $13,407. The chairman of the commissioners, who is selected annually by his or her peers, receives an annual salary of $13,768.

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