The Saratoga County Republican Committee has endorsed First Assistant District Attorney Karen Heggen to be the county’s next district attorney, and Andrew “Drew” Jarosh of Saratoga Springs for county treasurer.
The endorsements decided at a meeting Tuesday night in Wilton put Heggen in a strong position succeed District Attorney James A. Murphy III, who is running without opposition this year for County Court judge.
Former Assistant District Attorney David Harper remained in the race for DA through Tuesday’s meeting, and couldn’t be reached for comment on Wednesday. A spokesman said he would be issuing a statement later on his plans.
It isn’t yet known when or if Murphy will resign his current position, and the election to replace him as district attorney may not be until 2015.
Jarosh, meanwhile, would run this fall to succeed Sam Pitcheralle, who is retiring as county treasurer at the end of the year.
“Both Karen and Drew are exceptionally well-qualified individuals and experts in their fields of law and finance,” said county Republican Chairman John Herrick.
Democrats haven’t announced candidates for either of the positions.
Heggen, of Malta, won the endorsement in a field that initially included four candidates: Harper and fellow assistant prosecutors Debra Kaelin and Jim Davis.
Kaelin and Davis dropped out earlier. At a party executive committee meeting last week, Herrick said Heggen had the support of committees from all the large communities except Saratoga Springs, which had endorsed Harper.
Heggen has worked for the District Attorney’s Office for 17 years. The district attorney is elected for a four-year term, at a current salary of $150,975.
“It is a testament to Jim Murphy’s leadership that three of those who sought the district attorney position came from his office,” Heggen said in a statement. “I am committed to continue the strong prosecution, prevention and education programs and services we established in the Saratoga County District Attorney’s Office, because that is truly what sets us apart from other counties across the state.”
Heggen, whose father, Arne Heggen, is a former county attorney, graduated from Ballston Spa public schools, Middlebury College and Vermont Law School.
She has also served as the Malta Planning Board attorney and runs her own legal practice.
Jarosh has more than 15 years of finance, banking, investment-management and business-development experience. He sits on the board of directors of Saratoga’s Community Federal Credit Union and has worked on Saratoga Springs’ Community Development Block Grant committee.
He is a Saratoga Springs native. He holds a bachelor’s degree in finance and economics from the University of New Hampshire, an MBA from the University at Albany, and a master’s degree in financial engineering and risk analytics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He is currently pursuing a doctorate in finance from RPI.
He said he plans an active campaign, whether he has opposition or not.
The treasurer, who is the county’s chief financial officer, serves a four-year term, at a current salary of $101,582.
All countywide offices are currently held by Republicans, who have a significant edge in voter registration.