Salisbury cardiologist appointed Wicomico County Executive, some “stunned” by decision

WICOMICO COUNTY, Md. – Salisbury cardiologist Dr. Rene Desmarais was appointed as the new Wicomico County Executive on Thursday. However, the decision is being met with some confusion by the public and even other council members. So on Friday, 47 ABC reached out to all seven council members as well as Dr. Desmarais to get some answers.

“I think what we’re hearing mostly, from the public, right now is I believe they are looking for some type of an explanation as to how the vote came about and why,” says Wicomico County Council Vice President John Cannon.

On Thursday, the Wicomico County Council voted 4 to 3 in favor of appointing Salisbury cardiologist Dr. Rene Desmarais to serve as the next County Executive. “The audience was very stunned by that. Very surprised by that,” says Wicomico County Councilmember At-Large Bill McCain.

The other two candidates were former county employee Michele Ennis and Maryland Delegate Carl Anderton. “Dr. Desmarais who is a very intelligent individual, very good physician in the community. However, he has no governmental experience,” says McCain.

47 ABC reached out to the four council members who voted in favor of Dr. Desmarais. Only Ernie Davis and Nicole Acle got back to us and asked we only take written comments. Davis says he voted for Dr. Desmarais based on “what was presented and what’s in the best interest of the county.”

Acle says the main factor in not voting for Delegate Anderton was she wants him to continue working hard in Annapolis. However, others believe that experience could have served the county well. “He came very prepared. He had an outline that he handed out to each council member, outlining his plan for the future of Wicomico County in detail,” says McCain.

Dr. Desmarais has not returned 47 ABC’s calls for comment. Regardless of who the new executive is, the council members 47 ABC spoke with all believe this will take them in a new positive direction. “Well I feel 100 percent that no matter how this plays out that we are going to be moving forward for Wicomico County, I know I personally am looking forward to it,” says Cannon.

Now Dr. Rene Desmarais still has to formally accept the position of county executive. 47 ABC is also told that the council isn’t exactly sure if he will continue his medical practice or not. Meanwhile, Councilman John Cannon says the only way this decision would change is if one of the four members, who voted for him, files a motion to reconsider.

Cannon also says the three council members who did not vote for Dr. Desmarais wanted a decision to be postponed so that public comment could be considered. However, that was not approved by the council.

Categories: Local News, Maryland