Ellis County officials swear oath of office
"There's no turning back now," said 23rd Judicial District Chief Judge Glenn Braun, joking with some of the seven elected county officials signing their oath of office on Monday.
The signing came minutes after the seven took their oath Monday morning for their terms of office after winning election Nov. 3, 2020.
A small crowd of family, friends and colleagues were on hand in the gallery for the ceremony in the third-floor courtroom of the Ellis County Courthouse, 107 W. 12th.
"This is a big deal," Braun told those gathered as he opened the ceremony.
"The importance of serving, whether it be as a voter or an office holder, is one of our most sacred duties under the Constitution," he said. "For those that take the time, and pour in the energy to run for office ... The work that you have to put in, the sacrifice that you have to make for an office is something that you can't get a genuine appreciation for until you've actually done it. And once you've done it, I think it enforces the importance and significance of what we are about to undertake today and that is take the oath of office."
First to take the oath was Braun, sworn in by outgoing Ellis County Clerk Donna Maskus. Next up was Dean Haselhorst, to take his oath after reelection as county commissioner.
"Let's see the scratches on your back," Braun joked with Haselhorst, "and the whipping that you've taken on some of this stuff."
Others to take the oath were first-time county commissioner Neal Younger, first-term county clerk Bobbi Dreiling, longtime Ellis County register of deeds Rebecca Herzog, new Ellis County attorney Robert Anderson Jr., and first-time Ellis County Sheriff Scott Braun.
Braun led each official through the oath: "You solemnly swear or affirm that I will preserve, protect, defend and support the Constitution of the United States of America and the constitution of the state of Kansas and faithfully discharge the duties of," then paused to let each officer state their name and office and affirm "so help me God."
In his remarks opening the ceremony, Braun commended each official's effort in running for office.
"For all of you that are elected officials, I want to personally express to you my gratitude for what you put forth, and the energy and effort you gave to serve your fellow citizens," he said.
With the oaths sworn, Braun announced, "That concludes the swearing in, and now the work begins."
The swearing in was the last one for longtime county clerk Maskus, who is retiring after 42 years working in the clerk's office.
"Let's give Donna a big round of applause," Braun said. "We're going to miss her."