Utah County Commissioner Tanner Ainge is expected to step down, The Salt Lake Tribune has learned.
Multiple sources with knowledge of the commissioner’s plans told The Tribune that Ainge will be resigning his commission seat sometime soon to pursue other professional opportunities.
Ainge has been appointed to a board seat of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development by Gov. Spencer Cox on Wednesday morning. The four-year term is subject to confirmation by the Utah Senate.
Ainge has not yet responded to a request for comment. He is currently participating in military training with the Utah National Guard.
The 37-year-old Ainge was elected to the Utah County Commission in 2018. Prior to that, he jumped into the special congressional election to replace U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, who unexpectedly resigned in 2017. Ainge gathered signatures to reach the primary ballot where he faced off against then-Provo Mayor John Curtis and former state Rep. Chris Herrod. Ainge finished in third place with 24% of the vote.
Ainge gained national attention last year when he clashed with fellow commissioner, Bill Lee, over a potential mask mandate. More than 150 angry protesters showed up at the meeting. Ainge motioned to adjourn the meeting before it began because there were too many unmasked people in the meeting room.
A Republican critic of former President Donald Trump, Ainge is seen as the most moderate member of the three-person commission. He is also a member of the Utah National Guard.
Ainge is the son of former NBA and Brigham Young University basketball star Danny Ainge, who currently is the general manager of the NBA’s Boston Celtics.
The Salt Lake Tribune will update this story.