POCOPSON —Mike McGann announced Tuesday that he will seek the Democratic nomination for the Chester County Row Office of Register of Wills/Clerk of the Orphans Court in 2019.
McGann, who has owned and operated The Times of Chester County for the last eight years, has a lengthy record of community involvement, serving on various municipal and community boards — most focused on helping the county’s youth — has not been actively involved in politics since 2009, but has been an extremely close observer in recent years.
“There’s a lot of value of having had that ‘arms-length” view,” he said. “You learn pretty quickly that neither party has a monopoly on good ideas — and most folks in government, despite popular opinion, are there to try to do good for the greater community. I think I can bring that experience to county government and search for solutions, rather than get caught up in partisan battles.”
McGann said he had been content to focus on his other business ventures, including real estate holdings management and consulting work, as he transitioned The Times away from its original content model to strictly community submissions — but that he had been nudged by folks in the community and some friends to step forward and and consider taking a more public role.
“We could have continued The Times as it was for a while — although I’ve been subsidizing it for a couple of years now, out of pocket — but it seemed like this was the time to make a change,” he said. “In the early summer — before there was any thought of running for office again, we started slowly evolving away from crime, politics and local government news, in favor of articles submitted by the public. Beyond local arts and events coverage, we’ll be entirely community-based content based in 2019 and going forward.”
Having been around the block in Chester County politics from 2001 to 2009, McGann said he wasn’t going to run for something if he couldn’t have much of a chance to make a difference in the community.
“In truth, there aren’t a lot of political positions I’d have interest in — but because the Register of Wills office touches so many lives, from assisting on end of life issues, to issuing marriage certificates to protecting kids as Clerk of the Orphans’ Court, I see an opportunity to be a vocal advocate for populations often most in need of a champion,” he said.
McGann has more than 35 years of professional publishing experience and edited large national magazines including Home Theater, E-Gear and others. He’s written for many of the top consumer technology publications and sites — and owned an edited the award-winning Gotham Baseball Magazine, before selling it in 2006.
Over the last decade, McGann has served on various municipal and community boards, including more than two years as President of the Unionville-Chadds Ford Education Foundation, two years as chair of the Pocopson Township Parks, Recreation and Trails Committee. Additionally, he served on the board of the Unionville Recreation Association and currently is Vice President of the Unionville Rugby Boosters. He served as a youth sports coach for URA (boys and girls basketball, softball and baseball) and the Kennett Y (flag football) for nearly two decades.
A resident of Chester County — and Pocopson since 1999 — he is married to Dr. Stephanie McGann, who owns a dental practice in Valley Township. He chose to give up his magazine editing job to stay home with then infant twins — Janet and Kenny, now seniors at Unionville High School — and became a freelance writer and consultant, before working on the start up of magazines and Websites, before starting his own magazines and later, local news sites.
He is in the process of developing his new campaign Web site, which will be located at mikemcgann.org and is the process of forming his campaign committee.