Challenger Barnabei Unseats Greathouse in Hancock Race

Dan Greathouse’s 17-year run in office will soon come to an end, as the longtime Hancock County commissioner fell to challenger Joe Barnabei in Tuesday’s Democrat primary.

Despite his opponent’s experience, Barnabei cruised to an easy victory, collecting 1,688 votes to Greathouse’s 1,167. Those totals don’t include provisional ballots.

No Republican filed in the commission race, so barring a successful write-in challenge, Barnabei has won the seat.

Tuesday wasn’t the first time Barnabei’s name has appeared on a ballot, as he previously served 10 years on the county Board of Education, giving him a familiarity with county voters that challengers don’t often enjoy.

Barnabei could not be reached Tuesday night for comment. He has said he plans to do all he can to encourage opportunities for residents resulting from the local oil and gas boom and has also pledged to uphold accountability and transparency in government.

Barnabei is married to Patti Giannetta-Barnabei and has three children, Andre, Bianca and Liana.

Greathouse, who is retired from the former Weirton Steel Corp. also serves as executive director of the Top of West Virginia Convention and Visitors Bureau.

“The people have spoken. Congratulations to my opponent,” Greathouse said.

Regarding his time in office, Greathouse said he’s most proud of the stability the county has experienced under his leadership.

“The county’s in great financial shape, and I’m proud of that,” he said.