Former corrections officer announces bid for sheriff

MIFFLINTOWN – Glenn Kerstetter has announced his intention to run for Juniata County Sheriff.

Kerstetter, 41, is seeking the republican nomination for the office. He and his wife Lori have been married since 1990, and have since lived in McAlisterville.

Kerstetter graduated from East Juniata High School in 1989. He said right out of high school he became a firefighter for the Fayette Fire Company. Since then, he has remained active and is currently serving as the company’s president.

Kerstetter also said he has been a Pennsylvania certified Emergency Medical Technician since 1989.

“In 1995, I completed a course in Hotel/Restaurant Management, and I graduated from the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections Academy in November 2004,” he said.

“I am the chief of Fayette Township EMS, the public information officer for the Juniata County Department of Emergency Services, a director of Port Royal EMS, a member of the Juniata County Communications Advisory Board, and a member and appointed officer of Union Lodge No. 324,” he added.

Kerstetter has worked in Juniata County for much of his employment during and since high school. During his senior year, he was a grocery clerk at Weis Markets, and after graduation he began working at Stop 35 as a part time fuel clerk. He left Stop 35 for a full time security officer position for Burns International Security Services, where he guarded two sites during the first Gulf War.

“When security contracts expired in 1991, I returned to work in Juniata County as the Safety Officer at Excel Homes, just prior to them closing the Mifflintown plant. I returned to Stop 35 again in December 1991 as a fuel clerk. I was promoted to shift supervisor, then to accounting clerk, and finally Restaurant Manager. While at Stop 35, I met and worked with many wonderful people,” he said.

When Stop 35 was in the process of being sold, Kerstetter began looking for other opportunities. When Warden Lyter heard that he was looking for a career change, Lyter offered him a job as a correctional officer, which he graciously accepted in June of 2004.

“I was promoted to Sergeant in 2012, and as you all know the prison was closed in August, making me a furloughed employee,” Kerstetter said.

Kerstetter obtained employment in November of last year and worked through the Christmas rush as a temporary driver-helper with UPS. He currently works part-time in the Juniata County Register/Recorder’s office.

From 1999 to 2007 Kerstetter was the constable for Fayette Township, and when the Judge of Elections resigned in 2007, he volunteered to fill the vacancy and has served in that capacity since.

“Ever since I was a boy, growing up in Fayette, Delaware, and Monroe townships, I dreamed one day of being the Juniata County Sheriff. I believe the time has come to make that dream a reality,” Kerstetter said.

“Having been a county correctional officer until the prison’s closure has allowed me to have insight into the current Sheriff’s operating procedures and policies. I look forward to making Juniata County a safer place to live, work, and visit,” he added.

Kerstetter said with the increasing violence occurring throughout the region, it must be the goal of the Sheriff to protect the deputies and county employees. Also, he must be open to change to increase safety and security concerns within the county; all the while keeping the lines of communication open between the Sheriff’s Office and all other state and county offices and departments.

“My platform is still being built, as I am listening to the county’s citizens and officials. Throughout the campaign, I will be weighing and prioritizing the concerns that they feel are important to improve the Sheriff’s Office,” Kerstetter said.