The November 2020 election led to a major turnover on the Pinal County Board of Supervisors, with all five seats on the ballot and three of them changing hands.
The board expanded from three to five members in 2014, so this is the first time the expanded lineup has seen this much change. It’s also the first time all 11 of the County’s elected officials have been Republicans, between the five supervisors and six other offices including sheriff, recorder and County attorney.
Most of the winners, including the three new supervisors, were sworn into office Dec. 21.
Supervisor Kevin Cavanaugh
Cavanaugh, a Coolidge resident, represents District 1, which includes Coolidge, Florence, Superior, Kearney and Mammoth. He defeated former Supervisor Pete Rios, a Democrat, in the general election.
He is a former law enforcement official who worked briefly for the Pinal County Sheriff’s office. He has pursued several other political offices including Pinal sheriff and the special congressional race to replace former Rep. Trent Franks, but this is his first time serving in elected office.
Cavanaugh said his priorities include “intensive customer service” for the geographically largest district, covering the central Pinal cities plus the Copper Corridor along the eastern edge.
“Understanding the issues faced by the diverse group of residents will be accomplished through pro-active outreach,” he said. “We will maintain the current offices in Florence, Mammoth and Coolidge and work to expand available staff hours.”
He added that he wants to fix neglected maintenance issues and grow new businesses in the area: “I have helped start many businesses, and I will work with our Economic Development Office to bring businesses into Pinal County District 1 and work toward establishing small-business incubation to help people in the County start their own businesses.”
Supervisor Jeff McClure
McClure of Saddlebrooke ran for the District 4 seat after former Supervisor Anthony Smith of Maricopa announced his retirement. His district includes Maricopa, Ak-Chin Indian Community, Arizona City, Saddlebrooke and Oracle.
He was a member of the Oracle Elementary School District governing board from 2012 to 2020, after a career in manufacturing wall coverings and pneumatic “money tubes” for large retailers and “ice tubes” for restaurants and casinos.
McClure said he is excited about the economic opportunities available for Pinal County and the Board of Supervisors will play a crucial role in making sure it continues in a sustainable manner.
“The inter-dependency between transportation, water, housing and education has the power to both limit and launch economic growth,” he said. “This is a critical time to be involved in shaping the future of Pinal County and ensuring it is done in a thoughtful way that benefits all residents.”
He also wants the County to approach the budgeting process by having budget analysts work with department directors throughout the process to help determine which expenditures are necessary.
Supervisor Jeff Serdy
Serdy won the District 5 supervisor position after defeating incumbent Todd House in the Republican primary.
The district includes Apache Junction, Gold Canyon and Queen Valley.
He served as mayor of the City of Apache Junction for four years until 2020 and was on the City Council for nine years before then. He is the owner of AJI Sporting Goods, a high-volume gun store in Apache Junction. “I’m a busy person. If I’m not busy I make myself busy,” he said.
He said bolstering business growth in his area is his main priority in office. “I’d like to get more going here economically, through more tourism. There’s been a lot of growth in Maricopa and Casa Grande, I feel like we’ve been left behind a little bit,” he said.
Addressing infrastructure needs in northern Pinal County, including District 2, which covers San Tan Valley, is also high on his list.
“For all of the communities to the east of Apache Junction: Gold Canyon, Peralta, they only have access from one road, and that’s the 60. If there’s an emergency you can’t get through, or traffic for the Renaissance Festival backs all the way up to Mesa. I’d really like to be able to punch another road through there,” he said.