Ahrens said he will seek a third term as chair of the Cherokee County Board of Commissioners. His current expires on Dec. 31, 2014.
The chairman already has one challenger for the May 2014 Republican Party primary: Cherokee County Development Authority member and former Holly Springs City Council member Jackie Archer, who announced her bid earlier this year.
Ahrens said he wants to continue the positive developments he's witnessed and help steer in Cherokee County.
"Overall, Cherokee County has weathered the recession storm and remains poised for solid, quality growth going forward," He said. "We have outstanding leadership in all areas that serve the public’s interest (and) safety."
Cherokee County is "stronger" due to its ability to stick to its theme of "Manage the Downside/Create Opportunities," and the top priority going forward should remain on economic development opportunities, the chairman noted.
Those opportunities, he added, should encompass supporting existing industries and implementing tools to attract new ventures.
Ahrens was first elected in November 2006 when he defeated incumbent Mike Byrd and was re-elected without opposition in November 2010. He and wife Joan have been married for 49 years and have four children and four grandchildren.
He is currently the vice chair of the Cherokee County Water and Sewerage Authority and is a member of the Atlanta Regional Commission's Executive Committee, Association County Commissioners of Georgia's Pension Board of Trustees Cherokee County Board of Health, Metro North Georgia Water Planning District and the Metro Atlanta Arts and Culture Coalition.
Before retiring to Cherokee County in 2000, Ahrens spent a long career establishing consumer product markets around the world. The Ahrens family lived more than 17 years in Brazil, Hong Kong and Belgium. He retired as senior vice president-international at Rubbermaid, Inc., a position in which he reported directly to the company's chairman of the board.
Ahrens graduated in 1965 with a liberal arts degree from Yale University and graduated with a master's in business administration in 1970 from George Washington University — which he received while on active military duty.
He served in the U.S. Navy between 1966 and 1969, and was awarded the Joint Service Commendation Medal.
Ahrens played lacrosse at the Division I collegiate level and on numerous club teams across the country for 37 years. He also played 15 years of rugby, including as a member of the Brazilian National Team.