Boone County, Ky.
Why are you interested in serving as a NACo officer?
I have been blessed to be elected to five, four-year terms as Boone County, Kentucky Judge/Executive. During my tenure I have gained knowledge and experience from my involvement in NACo and KACo. I have also held many leadership positions at NARC, the National Association of Regional Councils, including National President in 2015-16. I believe that NACo’s role among the Big 7, Council of State Governments, National Governors Association, National Conference of State Legislatures, National League of Cities, United States Conference of Mayors, National Association of Counties, and the International City/County Management Association is so important and I will work to make NACo a stronger leader among these state and local organizations. I am excited to currently serve in a leadership role at NACo and I am well equipped and ready to take this service to a higher level. I will strive to lead NACo to greater heights.
What do you consider to have been your most important contribution to the National Association of Counties to date?
Serving as the NACo Chair of the NACo/NLC-National League of Cities joint task force on Opioid Abuse has been my greatest contribution but it has also been the most rewarding. Working with the NLC Chair, Mayor Mark Stodola of Little Rock, Arkansas, and the 18 other city and county officials, we tackled one of the greatest challenges facing our counties today.
What do you consider to have been your most important contribution to your state association of counties?
Serving as KACo 1st V.P. and being a member on the executive committee has allowed me to help position our state association as a trusted partner with our Governor and our State Legislature. We are now much stronger and quickly becoming the go-to organization on policy and legislative issues in Kentucky.
What do you consider to be the two or three most important challenges facing NACo in the near future on which the Officers/Executive Committee/Board of Directors should focus?
1. NACo can benefit from a clearer direction and better planning. We need a strategic plan!
Preferably a multi-year plan that is led by the executive committee and the board with input from our member counties and state associations.
2. NACo should be first! We should be the go-to organization when it comes to local government and today we are not. We are making great strides but there is much more work to be done if we are going to achieve this goal.
Why? NACo’s elected leadership and staff has done wonderful work over the past several years, but it is now time that we gather our resources and focus our efforts to make our organization and our 3,069 counties stronger and more efficient. It is also apparent that local governments will be asked to do more with less. These challenges will demand strong leadership that has a vision that is focused on success.
What measures would you recommend to increase and retain NACo membership and to encourage broad participation in NACo by elected officials and employees of NACo member counties?
I do feel that current leadership and staff is moving us in the right direction and we must continue to build upon this momentum. My state association in Kentucky recently voted to become a 100% NACo membership state because we see the increased value that NACo is delivering. Once we complete our strategic plan and implement it, NACo leadership and staff will be able to be more focused and effective in finding new solutions and programs that will have a positive impact on county governments, elected officials, and our local staffs through improved membership services, programs and advocacy efforts.
What specific role would you be willing to assume to help build and sustain membership in NACo?
If elected as your 2nd Vice President, I commit to work with the executive committee, the board, and other leaders to move our organization forward. I have the resources within my home county and within my state that allow me to be readily available and always in a position where I can work for you. It would be a blessing and a privilege to serve as your NACo 2nd Vice President and I ask for your vote!