Prominent Gila County Republican Passes

DON ASCOLI 1946-2021

Prominent Gila County Republican Passes

The Gila County Republican Party, as well as the State Party, lost a long time and prominent Republican with the passing of Don Ascoli the first week of August.

Don’s dip into Republican politics started early as a young man. Before moving to Payson, a decade ago, he was very active in Republican politics in the Valley and chairman of a legislative district in the Ahwatukee area of southeast Phoenix.

The Gila County Republican Party wasn’t very active in 2010 when Don was elected chairman. He immediately went to work growing the Party. He got the Party’s first website up, came from 14.9 percent behind Democrats in voter registration to just crossing into a Republican majority two years later, then got the first Republican elected sheriff since statehood in the 2012 election.

Don set the standard and direction for the Gila County Republican Party. Today Republicans are 73 percent ahead of Democrats in voter registration, Republicans hold all but three of the county elected offices and all three of the Arizona legislators in both legislative districts 6 and 8 are Republicans.

Don was a great mentor and tutor for the growing leadership of the Gila County Republican Party and many of the Party’s successes can be attributed to Don.

God received a Christian man and a good man.

Don Ascoli’s memorial service will be Saturday, September 25th at 11:30am followed by a luncheon at Don’s church, the Rock of Ages at 204 W. Airport Rd. in Payson.

GARY Morris, Chairman Gila County Republican Committee


 Rim Trail Domestic Water Improvement District

It is with great sorrow that I must inform you of the death of Don Ascoli, Rim Trail’s water manager. He and his son Mario, the water operator, were tested positive for Covid last week and went into isolation. Mario is recovering but Don has passed away. Don was well known and liked in the community and will be missed. Recently I learned that he would be attending a conference of the Rural Water Association of AZ later this month, and that they were seeking nominations for their Tribute to Excellence Award. I submitted his name for the Manager of the Year Award. This is what I wrote about Don, and it will be my tribute to him.

Bruce Johnson, Chairman, RTDWID

Having worked with Don Ascoli, Manager of the Rim Trail Domestic Water Improvement District for the past six years, I wholeheartedly endorse and nominate him for the Manager of the Year Award. As Chairman of the Board for the district it has been my pleasure to observe his performance and monitor his activities on an almost daily basis. His extensive training and expertise would be difficult to document but is evident in each action he performs for the benefit of the community. He continually increases his knowledge of the industry through membership in most of the water associations and by taking advantage of the educational opportunities they offer. In countless ways he economically operates the district and manages its finances for the resident owners. Don knows most of the residents personally and it is obvious that he regards them as neighbors. It is evident that service is his primary motivation by the many improvements and upgrades he has made to a fifty-year-old water system. He is dedicated to the industry and strives to continually improve the quality of the water delivered to the residents. In summation, the district never had it so good!

Thanks, Don

1 thought on “Prominent Gila County Republican Passes

  1. I am personally saddened at the loss of Don, a fine friend and co-worker for constitutional government. I wish the family peace and confidence that Don will be missed by a great many who knew and worked with him as part of the 3%. Don was always gracious and encouraging to those of us coming “up through the ranks” who admired his accomplishments and were inspired to do more.

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