Trucking People
Trucker for sheriff
OOIDA member Jeff Warta wants to be sheriff of Benton County, MO, but first he must win both the August Democratic Primary and the November general election.

Jeffrey Warta, an OOIDA life member from Warsaw, MO, is running for sheriff in Benton County, MO. He thinks he has a good chance of winning the election.

Warta describes himself as “a common man with a commonsense plan” for improving the Sheriff’s Department. On his campaign Web site, www.warta4sheriff.com, Warta promises to “never lose sight of who pays the bills.”

He’s no politician. In fact, the closest he’s been to a politician was when he served on vice presidential security detail while stationed with the 8th Army Headquarters as general security staff.

Warta joined the Army in 1981 right after high school graduation and has served as an airborne ranger and military police at home and overseas in Korea, Grenada, Honduras and Panama.

He started his trucking business in 1987, specializing in military transport. At the same time, Warta served as a part-time deputy sheriff in Benton County since 1996 and as a part-time reserve detective for the Appleton City, MO, Police Department since 2002. He earned his degree in criminal justice from Central Missouri State University in 1996.

Warta, his wife, Shelly, and their two daughters, Jennifer and Jessica, have lived in Warsaw for 15 years. His oldest daughter, Jennifer, her husband, Marcus, and their 18-month-old daughter, Kalyn, live there, too.

As a 41-year-old grandfather, Warta says his granddaughter is the No. 1 reason he is running for sheriff.

“I want her to have a safe, drug-free place to grow up,” he said. He’s expecting a second grandchild in September.

Warta doesn’t like the direction his community has gone of late.

“I have seen a wonderful county going downhill for the past 10 years or so,” he says. “Illegal drugs are probably the biggest contributor to the problems in our county. I have seen good people destroy their lives after becoming addicted.”

“Let’s get rid of the ‘good old boy’ system and make our county one where we feel safe and secure,” he added, “where no one is above the law, and all are treated equal.”

Although he will be too busy to drive, Warta plans to continue his trucking business when he becomes sheriff.

Campaign contributions can be sent to: Committee to Elect Jeff Warta, PO Box 1656, Warsaw, MO 65355.

—by René Tankersley, feature editor René Tankersley can be reached at rene_tankersley@landlinemag.com.