Columbus-A screening committee of Republican state senators on Wednesday met with six applicants for the Ohio 14th District state Senate seat vacated by former State Sen. Joe Uecker, who resigned in order to take a position with the Ohio Department of Transportation.
According to Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina), of the six candidates, the committee chose Scioto County’s Dr. Terry Johnson, who previously served in the Ohio House of Representatives 2011-2018 representing first the 89th and then the 90th House districts. He was last elected to a two-year term in 2016 and was unable run again because of term limits. Johnson also is a practicing osteopathic physician, medical educator and retired military officer.
The 14th District Senate seat includes Adams, Brown, Claremont and Scioto counties along with part of Lawrence County.
“I appreciate the interest and experience of all the candidates we met with, and each brings a unique understanding of the issues important to southern Ohio,” said Obhof. “I’m confident Terry will represent the people of the 14th Senate District well. His life’s work has been helping Ohioans overcome challenges and achieve their potential, whether that’s in the doctor’s office, on the battlefield or in a classroom and we look forward to working with him in the Senate.”
“It is an honor to be selected as the next senator for Ohio’s 14th Senate District,” Johnson stated. “Serving others is one of the great joys of my life and am looking forward to getting to work once again the legislature for the people of southern Ohio. It is my sincere hope to make the 14th district an even stronger and more prosperous place to live, work and raise our families.”
Johnson presently is employed by Valley View Health Centers in Waverly as Director of Medically Assisted Treatment and Integrated Health Services. According to a press release, Johnson works directly with addicted people, particularly those afflicted with opiate alcohol addiction.
Obhof’s office stated while serving in the Ohio House, Johnson “drew on his experiences as both a doctor and a coroner to champion important health related legislation to fight prescription drug abuse and help people safely dispose of unused medication.”
Johnson sponsored House Bill 93 designed to help shut down Ohio’s “pill mills” and aid in preventing prescription drug abuse.
Prior to joining the legislature, Johnson served as Scioto County Coroner for 10 years. He is a veteran of the Ohio Army National Guard and served multiple tours overseas as a senior flight surgeon. He has received numerous awards and honors, including the Ohio Osteopathic Associations Distinguished Service Award in 2018, described as the organization’s highest honor for an osteopathic physician.
Johnson graduated summa cum laude in 1985 from Ohio University with a bachelor’ s degree in history before attending the university’s College of Osteopathic Medicine. He began practicing medicine in southern Ohio in 1994.
He and his wife Jennifer, a pharmacist, currently live in McDermott, the parents of four sons and two grandchildren.
Johnson’s appointment still needs the approval of the full Republican Caucus, which will meet this month to vote on the screening committee’s recommendation.