Wicomico Council Names New County Executive

Dr. Rene Desmarais

The Wicomico County Council has selected Dr. Rene Desmarais to be the next County Executive.

Last night the Wicomico County Council approved a resolution to make Dr. Rene Desmarias County Executive. The Council conducted interviews in a socially distanced public session at the Wicomico County Youth & Civic Center where candidates were asked a variety of questions and had the opportunity to share their vision for the county. Only three of the four original applicants were interviewed as Councilmember Joe Holloway withdrew from consideration after legal opinions suggested his fellow councilmembers would not be able to vote for him. Candidates interviewed were: State Delegate Carl Anderton who represents part of Wicomico County in the General Assembly, former county Finance Director Michele Ennis, and Rene Desmarais, a cardiologist who ran in 2014 for a seat in the House of Delegates.

After a closed deliberation period, Council Vice President John Cannon put forth Anderton’s name for consideration, a move supported by two of the Council’s Democrats: Councilmembers Josh Hastings and Bill McCain. The remaining Councilmembers voted against the proposal and subsequently selected Desmarias for the role, with Councilmember Nicole Acle making the motion.

From the coverage in the Salisbury Independent:

He has been active within the local medical community, however, having previously served as President of PRMC’s medical staff and lobbying officials in Annapolis on health care issues. When he sought state office six years ago, he campaigned on a health care, education and environmental platform. In his interview before the council on Thursday, he steered many of the questions into a discussion of health care and the possibility of drawing more pharmaceutical and science-based manufactures to the county.

A New England, native, Demarias graduated from Xavier High School in Middletown, Conn., in 1979. He earned a Biology degree from Johns Hopkins University in 1983 before attending medical school at the University of Connecticut. He moved back to Baltimore for his residency at Johns Hopkins, then worked at the University of Virginia, before landing in Salisbury.

For more information and a wealth of reactions, read coverage in the Salisbury Independent, and the Delmarva Daily Times

View the Council agenda.

Previous coverage on Conduit Street:

Wicomico Council to Interview County Executive Candidates Thursday

Wicomico Council Begins County Executive Selection Process