Chaffee County Clerk Lori Mitchell — known for her colorful shoes and her clever Facebook posts reminding residents their motor-vehicle tags are about to expire — is the new president of the Colorado County Clerks Association.
Mitchell, who succeeds Logan County Clerk Pam Bacon, took the oath of office on Jan. 18 at the clerk’s winter conference in Colorado Springs.
“It has been the honor of my life to serve the community where I grew up, and now I get to serve as president of the Colorado County Clerks Association,” Mitchell ssaid. “This is the greatest group of people I have ever worked with. We always have our citizens in mind.
Colorado’s county clerks and their staffs learned about election security and costs, Motor Vehicle registration kiosks and privacy vs. public access from a stakeholder’s viewpoint at their conference in Snowmass Village this week.
Secretary of State Wayne Williams addressed the Colorado County Clerks Association on Tuesday, outlining legislation his office advocated for, the state’s leading status when it comes to voter turnout and registration, and future training to learn about election audits.
“Let me tell you how much I appreciate the opportunity to work with you and how much I and my staff appreciate your … commitment to ensuring that our elections are run with integrity,” Williams said.
Pam Anderson, the former Jefferson County clerk and the executive director of the Colorado County Clerks Association, said 54 of the state’s 64 county clerk offices sent representatives to the summer conference.
County clerks have a variety of responsibilities, from elections to motor vehicles to recording documents, such as marriage licenses and titles.
The titles of the conferences over the three-day workshop reflected that: “Creative Solutions for Long Lines,” “Election Integrity in the Current Political & Media Environment” and a “History of Paper & Demographics.”
Chaffee County Clerk Lori Mitchell, the president-elect of the clerks association, said she and her staffers learned plenty at the seminars. “They were really well done,” she said.
She took the oath of office from her predecessor, Arapahoe County Clerk Matt Crane, at the association’s winter conference in Colorado Springs last week.
“I accept the position of president of the CCCA with humility because I am sure it is not an easy task and I am certain that despite my best efforts, I will disappoint some of you sometimes,” Bacon said in her acceptance speech.
“My door is always open and I am only a phone call or e-mail away so feel free to reach out to me,” she said. “I recently told a clerk that we are all on the same team just in different zip codes and I do believe that. Our association is great at lending that helping hand or ear to a fellow clerk but we have to know your dilemma before we can extend that help.”
Lincoln County Clerk Corinne Lengel appreciated the fact that Secretary of State Wayne Williams drove to her county two days in a row this week.
Williams met with Lengel and her staff in Hugo on Wednesday, which was the last of three county clerk visits that day. He also traveled to see the Otero and Crowley county clerks.
The secretary returned to Lincoln County the next day to address the Colorado County Clerks Association eastern regional meeting in Limon.
“I was really impressed he took the time,” she said. “I’m very happy with the relationship he has made with the clerks.”
Williams couldn’t get over the spacious office space Lengel and her staff share at the Lincoln County Courthouse. In some clerks’ offices workers are shoehorned in but in Hugo Williams joked staffers must have to shout at the next desk to be heard.
“With perseverance you can get things done at the Capitol,” Humenik told the clerks. “Sometimes it just takes several years.”
The clerks association also honored outgoing Speaker Dickey Lee Hullinghorst, a Boulder Democrat who is only the second woman to lead the House. She carried House Bill 1303 in 2013, which made major changes in Colorado’s election laws.