Bob Brooks, ex-Murrysville mayor, to run for 54th state House seat |

Bob Brooks, ex-Murrysville mayor, to run for 54th state House seat

Joe Napsha
Ken Reabe Jr. | For The Tribune-Review
Former Murrysville mayor Bob Brooks talks with Cameron Rowell in spring 2017, at Murrysville Community Park. Brooks is planning to run for the 54th District House seat.
Bob Brooks

Former Murrysville mayor Bob Brooks is running for the Republican nomination in the May primary in the 54th state House District.

It’s a bid to succeed fellow Republican Rep. Eli Evankovich, who is not seeking re-election.

“I’m prepared to use my real-world business experience to get government out of the way of the small businesses, manufacturers, farmers and entrepreneurs who create the jobs our families need here in Southwestern Pennsylvania,” Brooks said in a release announcing his candidacy.

Brooks served on Murrysville Council and as mayor for a total of 26 years.

A self-described fiscal conservative, Brooks was chief financial officer at Westinghouse Air Brake Technologies Corp. in Wilmerding for almost 15 years and serves on the firm’s board of directors. Before he was CFO, he was division controller for Wabtec.

He also was director of the Brooks Sports Group, and the family owns and operates the Pittsburgh Indoor Sports Arena in Harmar.

Brooks was part of the team that helped save the Pirates and Penguins.

For his economic development efforts, Brooks was honored by The Economic Growth Connection of Westmoreland, a nonprofit economic development group, last year.

He was named “Pennsylvania’s Mayor of the Year” in 2015 by the Pennsylvania State Mayor’s Association.

Brooks will kick off the campaign with an event at the Sardis Volunteer Fire Co. on Feb. 12.

Brooks is the second Republican to announce his candidacy in the 54th District.

Attorney Michael Korns of Murrysville, who is head of the Westmoreland County Republican Party until the May primary, also is seeking the GOP nomination.

No Democrat has announced their candidacy. Lower Burrell Mayor Rich Callender briefly considered running for the office but removed himself from consideration earlier this month.

Candidates can pick up nominating petitions to get voters’ signatures to get on the ballot beginning Feb. 13.

Evankovich, of Murrysville announced in December 2016 he would not seek a fifth term after suffering injuries in a motorcycle accident in May 2016. He has held the office since winning election in 2010.

Joe Napsha is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-836-5252 or [email protected].

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