The 42-year-old rural Lawrence Republican hopes to follow in his father's footsteps.
Louie McElhaney served two terms on the commission, from 1989 to 1997. The younger McElhaney is running for the seat to be vacated by Dean Nieder.
Jere McElhaney has owned McElhaney Fence Builders, Lawrence, for 20 years. He served from June 1999 to July 1999 on the Lawrence-Douglas County Planning Commission and is a member of the board of directors of the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce.
He has served on the Ballard Center board, board of directors at Trinity Lutheran Church, and committees for the American Fence Assn. and International Fence Industry Assn. He was a volunteer firefighter for Wakarusa Township fire department for 25 years.
His main goal, he said, is to maintain Douglas County's quality of life as it continues to grow.
"Quality of life could be affected by growth, but it could be affected if we don't have growth either," he said.
McElhaney earned his bachelor's degree in paramedics from KU Medical Center.
He and his wife, Debbie, have three children: daughters Ryan, 16, and Chandler, 5, and son Chase, 8.
The 53-year-old Republican is a business owner and former Lawrence mayor who has lived in the county nearly 40 years.
"I have a real sincere interest in how the county runs," Schumm said.
He owns Buffalo Bob's Smokehouse and Massachusetts Street Delicatessen. He has lived in the county for nearly 40 years.
Schumm served as a Lawrence city commissioner for eight years, from 1979 to 1981, and 1987 to 1993. He served as mayor for two of those years and currently is chair of the Lawrence Sister City Advisory Board. He also is a member of the St. Lawrence Catholic Center and the Lawrence Cosmopolitan Breakfast Service Club.
He and his wife, Sandra, have three grown children; one daughter, Marguerite, an eighth-grader, at home. Sandra Schumm is a Spanish professor at Baker University in Baldwin.
Schumm said he would like to focus on growth issues as the county's population continues to increase. He said he wanted to help develop "good" policies that promote growth.
"I really would like to participate in the activities that form this place, what it's going to look like and what it's going to feel like," he said.