Larimer County’s Irene Josey: a treasurer — and a treasure

Larimer County Treasurer Irene Josey sits in the the newly remodeled lobby in her office in Fort Collins. The wall of historic Larimer County photos were reproduced and framed by John Clarke Photography. Clarke was a Larimer County commissioner from 1995 to 1999. (Treasurer’s photo)

Here’s to Larimer County Treasurer Irene Josey for bringing back a bit of history to her office: a 2,500-pound safe that left the courthouse in a front-end loader in the 1970s and now graces her lobby.

The Fort Collins Coloradoan recently ran an intriguing story about Josey’s role in getting the safe back.

“The safe was built by the Mosler Safe Co. of Hamilton, Ohio, in the 1890s. In its day, it probably held money, bonds and other important documents,” the newspaper reported. “The original floral-print carpeting still covers its floor. Pasted to the inside of the safe are ‘service tickets’ from when its time lock received maintenance. The earliest dates to 1899.”

Local Realtor Sean Dougherty told Josey in March 2016 he saw the safe in a house for sale. It was built into a wall with “Larimer County Treasurer’s Office” painted above the safe door. Josey did some research and learned the safe was used in the original Larimer County Courthouse, which opened in 1887. It stayed in use until a new safe was purchased in 1964.

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From deputy clerk to deputy treasurer: Ryan Parsell’s new job

Ryan Parsell.

It looks like Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams might have a new carpool buddy: Today state Treasurer Walker Stapleton announced he hired Ryan Parsell to serve as his deputy treasurer.

Both Parsell and Williams live in Colorado Springs. The treasurer’s office is located at the state Capitol in  Denver, the secretary of state’s office is two blocks north, on Broadway.

The two will have plenty to talk about. Williams hired Parsell as his public information officer when he served as the El Paso County clerk and recorder. Williams’ successor in that job, Chuck Broerman, added deputy clerk duties to Parsell’s job.

Williams was thrilled with the appointment.

“Walker Stapleton’s selection of Ryan Parsell as his deputy treasurer demonstrates the quality of individuals who work for Colorado’s county clerks and recorders,” Williams said. “Coloradans trust our county clerks and I know Ryan will carry that trust forward.”

Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams holds Gracelynn Parsell, the daughter of his former staffer Ryan Parsell, at a recent event in Colorado Springs. (FB photo)

Parsell was equally complimentary.

“Serving in the clerk’s office — especially with great clerks like Chuck Broerman and Wayne Williams — has taught me much and has prepared me for this role,” he said. “I appreciate all that they have taught me about good government, transparency and fiscal responsibility.”

Kudos to reporter Joey Bunch with Colorado Politics for this great gem when writing about Stapleton’s appointment of Parsell:

He doesn’t have to be sworn in, which is good, since the last guy swore himself out of a job.

Parsell replaces Jon Forbes, who turned in his resignation after cursing, including the f bomb, at the state PERA board last month.

I met Parsell in person in 2013 when covering the election to recall two seated Democratic state senators, John Morse of Colorado Springs and Angela Giron of Pueblo, over their votes on gun bills.  I couldn’t get over then how much Parsell looked like my former boss at The Denver Post, Curtis Hubbard.

I remember when Parsell was supposed to help Williams when the secretary and his wife, Holly, moved into a smaller home. Williams loved ribbing Parsell about the “excuse” he used to get out of the move: “My wife Christiana is in labor.”

Oh yeah, they’re going to have plenty to talk about.

Wayne Williams: ‘The people who won the election, won the election’

Secretary of State Wayne Williams on Tuesday addressed the Colorado Springs Chamber & EDC and Leadership Pikes Peak. (SOS photo)

By Lynn Bartels
and Julia Sunny

Secretary of State Wayne Williams preached to the choir on Tuesday, telling his fellow Colorado Springs brethren that Colorado’s transportation woes aren’t good for the economy.

“My wife’s from Utah so I get to go over to Utah frequently and I drive this 10-lane interstate that exists between their equivalent of Colorado Springs, which is Provo, and Salt Lake, which is their equivalent of Denver,” he said. “We have four (lanes). They have 10. We have almost twice as many people. See if that math makes sense to you. It doesn’t to me. ”

He knows first hand: He still lives in Colorado Springs and has to make that “really crappy drive” on Interstate 25 to his office in Denver.

Lobbyist Joan Green and Rep. Paul Lundeen, R-Monument.

Williams said once when he was flying out of Salt Lake City he asked some skiers at the airport, “Why Utah?” Their answer: They can get to the slopes faster than flying into Denver.

“That’s something we have to address as a state for our continued economic viability,” he said.

Williams, a former El Paso County commissioner and clerk, addressed the Colorado Springs Chamber & EDC and Leadership Pike Peaks at a lunch at History Colorado before group members headed to the state Capitol for their 2017 Day at the Capitol.

The secretary of state spoke on familiar topics, including election integrity.

“Here in Colorado,” he said, “I can assuredly tell you that the people who won the election, won the election.”

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Tustin Amole, Woman of the Year

Harry Bull, the superintendent of the Cherry Creek School District, and Tustin Amole, the district's communications director, were named Man and Woman of the Year today by The Villager. (Peter Jones/The Villager)
Harry Bull, the superintendent of the Cherry Creek School District, and Tustin Amole, the district’s communications director, were named Man and Woman of the Year today by The Villager. (Peter Jones/The Villager)

What an honor for Tustin Amole. In what will be her last year as spokeswoman for the Cherry Creek School District, she has been named The Villager’s Woman of the year and her boss, Superintendent Harry Bull, has been named the Man of the Year.

The Villager announced the winners today, saying Bull “puts the ‘super’ in ‘intendent.'” It’s the latest honor for Bull, who also has been named Administrator of the Year from the Colorado High School Press Association.

Of Amole, The Villager’s Peter Jones wrote, “From winning test scores and mill levy victories to lunchroom ‘scandals’ and teachers behaving badly, Amole has strived for nearly two decades to tell the Cherry Creek story in full, even in the face of death threats and only a few obnoxious journalists.”

“As a former reporter, I was very familiar with the open-records law so I knew what had to be given up,” Amole told the newspaper in an interview. “There’s no point in stalling. People who try to stonewall the media — it always ends badly for them.”

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Denver Press Club: Trying to make sense of the 2016 election

Hosted by the Denver Press Club.
Hosted by the Denver Press Club.

The Denver Press Club is hosting a political “conversation” with veteran consultants Rick Ridder and Sean Duffy, who will try to “make sense of the new campaign paradigm” after Donald Trump’s victory.

Trump says it’s time to move on, but this event from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday Jan. 5 looks to be a don’t miss.  Nathan Heffel, host of Colorado Public Radio’s “Colorado Matters,” will moderate.

Ridder is a Democrat whose new book is “Looking for Votes in All the Wrong Places: Tales and Rules from the Campaign Trail.” (Love the blurb that says “illustrated by entertaining, instructive, and mostly true stories from his own experiences.” Mostly true!) He and his wife Joannie Braden founded RBI Strategies & Research.

Duffy served as deputy chief of staff for former GOP Gov. Bill Owens. Duffy now is president of Shamrock Strategies, a pubic affairs consulting firm.

The Denver Press Club hosted the presidential debates last year, drawing big crowds and visiting overseas journalists.  It’s only fitting that it hosts the look back.