Six more elected officials sworn in

The group includes two starting new positions

CLARK COUNTY — Six elected officials started off their New Year’s Eve day taking the oath of office in front of a packed house in the County Council chambers.

“It is the best day you’ll have,” joked outgoing County Chair Marc Boldt, “it all goes downhill.”

Six elected officials took the oath of office on New Year’s Eve day. From left to right — Superior Court Judge David Gregerson, Clark County Treasurer Alishia Topper, Clark County Assessor Peter Van Nortwick, Clark County Sheriff Chuck Atkins, District 1 County Councilor Temple Lentz, Clark County Clerk Scott Weber, District 2 County Councilor Julie Olson. Photo by Chris Brown
Six elected officials took the oath of office on New Year’s Eve day. From left to right — Superior Court Judge David Gregerson, Clark County Treasurer Alishia Topper, Clark County Assessor Peter Van Nortwick, Clark County Sheriff Chuck Atkins, District 1 County Councilor Temple Lentz, Clark County Clerk Scott Weber, District 2 County Councilor Julie Olson. Photo by Chris Brown

Two of the six electeds being sworn in were doing so for the first time in their new positions. Temple Lentz is replacing Jeanne Stewart as councilor for District 1, and Alishia Topper is moving over from Vancouver City Council to become County Treasurer. She replaces Doug Lasher, who retired after 34 years working in county government. Lasher was on hand to wish Topper the best in her new position.

Also being sworn in were District 2 County Councilor Julie Olson, winning her second term, County Sheriff Chuck Atkins, who ran unopposed for a second term, County Clerk Scott Weber, entering his third term, and County Assessor Peter Van Nortwick.

“This is only my third term and everyone who is on the council was not here when I was first elected,” said Van Nortwick. “So, really, your representative government does change over a lot more than people think.”

A packed room at the Clark County Building to witness six elected officials take the oath of office. Photo by Chris Brown
A packed room at the Clark County Building to witness six elected officials take the oath of office. Photo by Chris Brown

Superior Court Judge David Gregerson, who officiated the ceremony, also talked about the way local elections work, leading to a blend of experience levels.

“It’s a small but important symbol of what we do in this country,” said Gregerson, “that we commit to following the law and serving in our community. And, again, at a time when we are overwhelmed with media messages of cynicism about public service, it’s a great time for those of us that have served, that do serve, or know people who serve — who serve with distinction and excellence, and the best and highest of civic-mindedness — it’s a great time to go out and tell those people at your New Year’s Eve party tonight, that you know and have experience first-hand of those people who are committed to public excellence.”

“I just look to 2019 and the next four years with a great sense of optimism,” said Olson. “We’ve got a new councilor, we’re going to be looking at appointing another new councilor, so we are fully into the implementation of the charter with our new county manager and all of our councilors elected under the charter.”

The Clark County GOP has opened up an application process for nominations to replace District 4 Councilor Eileen Quiring, who was elected to take over as chair. Those applications are due by January 10. The full council will ultimately vote for three finalists to fill the remaining two years of Quiring’s original seat.

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About The Author

Chris Brown comes to Clark County Today with 15 years of local news experience as a reporter, editor, and anchor at KXL News Radio and KOIN-6 TV in Portland. In 2016, he won an Oregon Association of Broadcaster's award for Best Investigative Reporting for a series on America's Violent Youth. He has also been awarded by the Associated Press for Best Breaking News coverage as editor of Portland's Morning News following the 2015 school shooting at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. The second oldest of eight home-schooled children, Brown graduated from high school two years early. After several odd jobs, he earned an internship at KXL Radio, eventually working his way into a full-time job. Brown has lived in Clark County his entire life, and is very excited at the opportunity to now focus full-time on the significant stories happening in his own back yard, rather than across “the river.’’ After a few years in Vancouver, he recently moved back to Battle Ground with his wife and two young daughters. When he's not working to report what's happening in Clark County, Brown enjoys spending time with his family, playing music, taking pictures, or working in the yard. He also actually does enjoy long walks on the beach, and sunsets.

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