Recording board says farewell to Adams, Arapahoe clerks

The Electronic Recording Technology Board at its meeting Tuesday at the Colorado Secretary of State’s office. It is the last meeting for chairman Matt Crane, right, the outgoing Arapahoe County clerk. From left to right, board treasurer Gary Zimmerman, the SOS’ chief of staff; member Susan Corliss, the Kit Carson County clerk and recorder;  Charles Calvin with the Colorado Bar Association, Michelle Batey, the executive director of the ERTB; and Crane. (SOS photo)

The name is clunky — the Electronic Recording Technology Board. But its importance is hard to overstate — the board hands out grants to county clerks to update equipment that records property records, marriage licenses, mineral rights and more.

At Tuesday’s meeting at the Colorado Secretary of State’s office, the board paid tribute to two outgoing members, Arapahoe County Clerk Matt Crane and Adams County Clerk Stan Martin.

Crane has served as the chairman since the enterprise operation was created through legislation in 2016.  The measure also authorized clerks to charge a $2-a-document fee for five years to create a pool of money to help counties cover the cost of upgrades and purchases.

“It’s been fun to get this off the ground, considering where we were,” Crane said.

Read moreRecording board says farewell to Adams, Arapahoe clerks

Plain or à la mode, it’s another fun day at the Secretary of State’s office


The Colorado Secretary of State’s video on pie/pi.

Cherry. Apple. Pumpkin. Pecan. Banana cream. Secretary of State employees rattled off names of their favorite pies on Tuesday, national Pi Day, held on March 14 because the date 3-14 contains the first three first digits in Pi.

Julia Sunny, the social medial coordinator for the Colorado Secretary of State. (SOS photo)

Of course, Secretary of State Wayne Williams could rattle off the Pi forumula with ease — he was a Truman Scholar after all. But others struggled, as documented in the first video by the office’s new social media coordinator, Julia Sunny.

After his 15 minutes of fame, Williams dined on apple pie and cheesecake, provided by the office’s Employee Relations Committee.

“Our Employee Relations Committee does a great job of putting together activities to help make this a good place to work,” Williams said.

“They’re providing pie for all the employees today so I look forward to visiting with my colleagues and enjoying some good-tasting pie.”

Deputy Elections Director Hilary Rudy and Chief of Staff Gary Zimmerman both liked their grandmothers’ pies. Ben Schler, the legal and internal operations manager for the elections division, likes his crust made with lots of butter. Schler and HR technician Wyatt Ryder prefer cheesecake over pie.

If you like pecan pie, you might want to skip my reference to it.

The not-so secret lives of Secretary of State staffers

A year ago, Wyatt Ryder hiked more than 40 miles in the Grand Canyon. He recently joined the Secretary of State's office as an HR technician. He mentioned the hike and also his fluency in Russian when asked to provide three facts about himself.
A year ago, Wyatt Ryder hiked more than 40 miles in the Grand Canyon. He recently joined the Secretary of State’s office as an HR technician. He mentioned the hike and also his fluency in Russian when asked to provide facts about himself. (Ryder photo)

Carla Moore’s cousin wrote “Mustang Sally.” Jackie Cuin caught the bouquet at her husband’s first wedding. National Geographic in 2010 named Steve Bouey one of its “Adventurers of the Year.”

When the Colorado Secretary of State’s office asked staffers to provide three “fun or unique” facts about themselves, all sorts of factoids came out.

Joel Albin went as a French maid the last time he dressed up for Halloween. Chris Cash served as an official scorekeeper when Denver hosted the NCAA Final Four in 1990.  Kris Reynolds’ declared major in college was “Music Performance for the Violin.

And although Jessamyn Geesaman went through years of speech therapy, when she gets mad she still sounds a bit like Elmer Fudd.

The fun-facts exercise was all part of employee appreciation week at the Colorado SOS. The event included daily quizzes for prizes, a scavenger hunt and pastries and coffee.

“I’ve been privileged to work with a wonderful group of people these past two years,” said Secretary of State Wayne Williams. “My colleagues’ quirks and experiences outside government guide us as we develop common sense solutions to help Coloradans.”

Read moreThe not-so secret lives of Secretary of State staffers

Rocking-and-rolling in Cleveland

Wayne Williams, then an El Paso County commissioner, at the 2008 RNC. (Lynn Bartels/RMN)
Wayne Williams, then an El Paso County commissioner, at the 2008 RNC. (Lynn Bartels/RMN)

As a new state employee I get a mere two weeks of vacation annually, which is why my family thinks I’m nuts for burning 50 percent of it to attend the Republican National Convention in Cleveland next week.

I’m a guest of my boss, Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams, who is a delegate to the RNC. He asked me after his wife, daughter and son turned him down.

“When I saw the exited look in Lynn’s face I knew she really wanted to attend,” Williams said.  “And while Holly also thinks it would be exciting, she is more thrilled to use her vacation time with our new granddaughter.”

The RNC coincides with a Bartels family vacation in northern Wisconsin on an amazing lake. I’m sure when I’m sweating in Ohio I’ll curse my decision — although I can’t use my favorite words when Williams is around.

As a journalist, I covered national conventions, including the Democratic gala in Denver in 2008. It was at the RNC in the Twin Cities that same year that I got to know Wayne better. (I left my billfold at the hotel and the Colorado Springs Republican, then an El Paso County commissioner, lent me 20 bucks.)

The Secret Someone from the Secret Service offered to get my picture during the balloon drop of the 2008 RNC. (Lynn Bartels/RMN)
Here I am, last night of the RNC in the Twin Cities in 2008.

Chief of Staff Gary Zimmerman  still makes fun of me for saying, “I think going to Cleveland is the chance of a lifetime.” It is sure to be more exciting than Minneapolis-St. Paul.

And let me state for the record: I am taking vacation, and paying my own airfare and hotel room for the week. I am not going as Williams’ communications director, but as a political junkie who wants to witness history being made.

P.S. Williams also is not using state funds to attend.

UPDATE: I’m also going to miss Vincent Carroll’s retirement party July 18 at the Independence Institute. Dang.