Term: May 2017 – May 2020
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine has reappointed Donald L. Mason of Zanesville, Ohio, to a nine-year term on the Kent State University Board of Trustees. Mason’s new appointment runs through May 16, 2029. Previously, Mason was appointed by former Ohio Gov. John Kasich to a three-year term on the Kent State Board of Trustees that began May 19, 2017, to replace the unexpired term of the late trustee Richard Marsh.
On the Kent State Board for 2020-2021, Mason is the chair of the Audit and Compliance Committee, chair of the Investment Committee and a member of the Finance and Administration Committee.
Mason currently serves as mayor of the city of Zanesville. He has long been committed to public service. Mason was elected as a write-in candidate to the Zanesville City Council in 1979 and served on the council through 1983. In 1983, at the age of 26, Mason was elected mayor of the city of Zanesville.
He has served Ohio on the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, and he has served two terms as a commissioner of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio.
Additionally, Mason’s prior governmental service has included the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, serving as chief of the Division of Oil and Gas and as a member on the Hazardous Waste Facilities Board. As deputy director of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, he supervised the divisions of Parks, Forestry, Watercraft, Natural Areas and Preserves, and Wildlife. Those agencies totaled more than 2,000 employees and $100 million in annual budgets.
Mason also has served on the National Petroleum Council and was a member of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, where he served as chairman of the Gas Committee and member of the Board of Directors. Additionally, he was a government representative and chairman on the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Technical Hazardous Liquid Pipeline Safety Committee. Mason also served as chairman of the Gas Technology Institute Public Interest Advisory Committee.
Mason graduated with a degree in political science from Muskingum University, where he was the first NCAA All-American wrestler ever at Muskingum. He later earned his law degree cum laude from Capital University. He is the past president of both the Rotary Club of Zanesville and the Muskingum County Library System. He is also a 32nd degree Mason, Shriner and a member of the several other Masonic organizations such as York and Scottish Rites, Amrou Grotto and the Knights of Columbus. Mason is also an Ohio high school wrestling official. He is a member of the Zanesville High School and Muskingum University Halls of Fame. He is a lifetime member of the NAACP, where he serves on the Muskingum County Chapter Board and has been the master of ceremonies for the Annual Freedom Fund Dinner.