Snyder County man eyes House seat

Malcolm Derk announced his intention to seek the Republican nomination for the 12th Congressional seat.

Derk, 36, of Freeburg, is the director of Grants and Foundation Relations at Susquehanna University.

A former three-term Snyder County Commissioner, he staged an unsuccessful bid for Congress in 2010.

Derk is a graduate of Selinsgrove High School and Susquehanna University where he majored in political science and religion.

He served for six years on Freeburg Borough Council and as president of the SEDA-Council of Governments, where he led a 22-member board of commissioners and business leaders.

He also served on the statewide board of the County Commissioners of Pennsylvania and as chair of the Governance Committee.

Derk said his 16 years of local government experience and knowledge of higher education provide him with a unique background for serving the district.

“As a former candidate for Congress, I met GOP leaders throughout the state and know the vigor of a congressional campaign,” he said. “I look forward to working hard to earn the support of the 12th District as we prepare for the May 21st election.”

Derk noted his experience as a Snyder County Commissioner, managing a $20 million budget, more than 200 employees and a pension fund.

While commissioner, the county debt was decreased from more than $7.5 million to less than $2 million, he said. During his tenure, the county also approved more than $3 million in water and sewer upgrades through the Community Development Grant Program, brought the county jail to full compliance with the state Department of Corrections, improved recycling efforts, and fully funded pension obligations.

Derk was appointed by Gov. Tom Corbett to serve on the Local Government Advisory Board for the Chesapeake Bay Program.

He said he has a love for government service

“The big thing for me is I feel 16 years of government service have served me well,” he said. “It’s a great opportunity to take that experience to Washington.”

Derk pointed to the region’s educational institutions as training for future generations.

“I look forward to providing excellent constituent services — ensuring our communities have a tireless advocate for our local priorities,” he said. “I will promote innovation and opportunity by advancing technical education, higher-education, and workforce development as we prepare the next generation of American workers for the jobs of the future. I look forward to working with President Trump and Congressional leaders to support an infrastructure plan that rebuilds our aging infrastructure. In Congress, I will support market-driven solutions and encourage local government innovation.”

Derk and his wife, Erin, reside in Freeburg, Snyder County, with their two