Chester County Commissioner Michelle Kichline will not seek re-election in 2023

Michelle Kichline.

Michelle Kichline. (Chester County)

One of Chester County’s commissioners will be throwing in the towel after nearly a decade of service.

Michelle Kichline, the lone Republican on the Chester County Board of Commissioners, will not be seeking re-election in 2023. However, she said this should come by no surprise to those who know her ideals.

“I firmly believe that elected officials should have limited terms. I will, at the end of my tenure, which will be the end of next year, I will have served for nine years,” Kichline said.

She was initially appointed in 2014 for one year to fill a vacant seat. Kichline has since been elected to two more terms.

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“I knew this was not a permanent position, but I’ve loved it. It’s been terrific. I grew up in Chester County and it’s really been a tremendous honor to serve as a county commissioner,” Kichline said.

Kichline said that she’s been a “planner” all her life. She said she’s accomplished all of what she had on her agenda. Kichline attended the University of Pennsylvania for undergraduate studies. She went to the Beasley School of Law at Temple University.

She later clerked for a Montgomery County judge and became a practicing attorney. Her experience representing municipalities and school districts ultimately led her down the path of serving on the Tredyffrin Township Board of Supervisors.

“Honestly, this is the first time I don’t have any specific plans coming up. I’m still a licensed lawyer. My specialty, which has always been representing municipalities and school districts, the law really hasn’t changed significantly. So, that certainly is an option. I can go back to practicing law, or, frankly, after being a commissioner and dealing with a $600 million budget, 2,400 employees, there’s certainly opportunities either in the private or nonprofit sector,” Kichline said.

Her next path has yet to be decided.

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Reflecting on her tenure as commissioner, Kichline said she is proudest of the county’s actions in tackling the opioid crisis.

“We actually very aggressively went after a lot of the opioid manufacturers. This is even before it became a statewide initiative. We were one of the first counties to file some lawsuits on behalf of our citizens,” Kichline said.

She also said she is proud of the team of county employees Chesco has been able to assemble.

Because minority party representation is required on the Chester County Board of Supervisors and two Democrats currently occupy the other seats, Kichline’s replacement will likely be a Republican if the other incumbents maintain their offices.

The Daily Local News reports that former state Rep. Eric Roe and educator David Sommers have announced they would each run for the Republican nomination.

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