Deputy running for Westmoreland sheriff’s post |

Deputy running for Westmoreland sheriff’s post

Rich Cholodofsky

A Hempfield man who has served as a Westmoreland County deputy sheriff for eight years now wants to run the office.

Sam Pilato, 56, announced he will be a Republican candidate in the May primary seeking the job as county sheriff.

“If elected (my) mission is to return the sheriff’s department to normalcy, to regain the community’s trust and continue to develop integrity, accountability, and honesty within the department,” Pilato said. “I would also like to strengthen the sheriff department’s relationships with local police and fire departments, community youth organizations and school districts throughout the county.”

Pilato graduated from Mt. Pleasant Area High School and attended the University of Pittsburgh, where he played football. Prior to his current job at the sheriff’s office, Pilato worked for 25 years in various positions at a local building materials business. He is married and has three adult children.

Two-term Republican Sheriff Jonathan Held has not formally announced if he will seek another term in office.

Held, 44, of Hempfield, is awaiting trial in April on charges that he directed sheriff’s department staff to perform chores for his previous re-election bid while on duty for the county. Held has denied the allegations.

A mistrial ended Held’s first trial in December after jurors were unable to reach a unanimous verdict.

Rich Cholodofsky is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Rich at 724-830-6293 or [email protected]