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Indian Lake councilman joins growing field of commissioner candidates

January 31, 2019

Indian Lake Borough Councilman Curtis Morgese announced Wednesday his bid for Somerset County commissioner in the 2019 primary.

The 63-year-old Republican is the 30-year owner of Oral Renaissance Dental Lab and has served six years on the borough council. Morgese said he felt that with his experience in business and politics, now is the right time to join the commissioners race to help the county.

“I enjoy politics, interacting with people and problem-solving, and I think the time is right,” he said.

Morgese said he studied politics during night classes at the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg because he was interested in the subject and wanted to be more involved in his community.

“I found I was complaining about it so much, I thought, ‘If you are going to complain, you owe it to yourself to go learn more about it,’” he said. “So that’s what I did.”

Morgese was born in Wisconsin and joined the Navy in 1973 because he “wanted to see the world.” He started the dental lab in 1986.

“The lab specializes in crown, bridge implants and dental work,” he said.

He had a cabin at Indian Lake for 15 years, and while serving in the Navy in Maryland spent time skiing at Seven Springs Mountain Resort. Morgese moved permanently to the area around six years ago and brought his business with him.

“I just developed a love for the mountains up here,” he said. “I know the bike and mountain trails better than anybody walking in this area.”

Morgese said the people in southwestern Pennsylvania are some of the most heartwarming people he’s met in his travels, and he wants to see the area prosper. He added that it’s tough to keep young people from leaving the area in search of employment.

“Whatever I can do to make this a better place, keep people working and wanting to live here,” he said.

“It’s important to me, and I think it’s important to all of us.”

Morgese said he hopes residents know he’s a fair, “commonsense” individual who believes teamwork is the key to success.

“This is where I call home,” he said. “I want to see it do well; I want to see its people do well and I enjoy politics. It’s just that simple.”

Republican county Commissioner Gerald Walker said he is running for a second term. County Republican Party Chairwoman Colleen Dawson and state House aide Thursa Trent-Crouse have also announced they will seek one of the two available Republican nominations. Nurse Frank Pelesky and former Commissioner Pamela Tokar-Ickes have announced they will seek the Democratic nominations.

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