11/8/22 Candidates gather at county building for election results, Monica Casanova, Angèl Valentin

Monica Casanova (left) and Angel Valentin (center) are both hispanic and democratic. Casanova said that her identity greatly influenced her campaign. 

The trustee positions of Fairfield and Wabash townships stayed Democratic on Tuesday night as Monica Casanova and Angel Valentin won, with 52.47% and 64.25% of the vote, respectively.

The election comes after Democrat Taletha Coles resigned as Fairfield Township trustee Sept. 27 before facing more than 40 felony charges, including theft, forgery and fraud.

Casanova said the corruption scandal of her predecessor hung over her campaign.

“There’s a lot of rebuilding of trust I must do,” she said. “Voters want to know that I will be transparent and accountable to my community.”

Valentin and Casanova are both Hispanic, and Casanova believes their identities have shaped their campaigns.

“(My identity) influences my day-to-day life. It’s inextricable from my campaign and everything I do,” Casanova said.

Valentin was optimistic earlier in the evening about his chances of winning, believing his largest base of support comes from firefighters in Wabash Township.

“We want to make sure we provide good fire protection to all parts of Wabash Township,” he said. “Because of this, the professional firefighters union of Indiana has endorsed our campaign.”

The Exponent was unable to reach Casanova’s opponent, Republican April O’Brien, as well as Valentin’s opponent, Republican Eric Hoppenjans, for  comment.

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