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Sherrill announces candidacy for circuit court clerk
Duane Sherrill mug

Longtime crime and courts writer Duane Sherrill believes his nearly three decades working closely with the court system and his knowledge of mass communication make him the best choice for circuit court clerk.

“There’s no replacement for experience,” Sherrill said in making his announcement, touting 28 years working with the office he is now seeking. “I’ve worked with Bernie Morris for all 24 years she has served and with Buck Vinson before that. My intricate knowledge of the clerk’s office, as well as the courts, will make for an easier transition and allow me to hit the ground running.”

Sherrill said he has seen many changes since he began covering the courts in 1990 and believes he can build on Morris’ successes and take the office to the next level.

“I want to transition to using email rather than faxes, when possible,” Sherrill said. “In that way we can cut back on the use of paper and ink, both of which are very expensive. That will also speed up the way information is shared.”

Sherrill said his work in helping pioneer the digital media revolution at the local paper will pay dividends as circuit clerk.

“This is the people’s office,” Sherrill declared. “As such, the people of Warren County should have easy access to information. We can accomplish this by providing a website where people can go to get information on cases and see what happened in court from the convenience of their computers or cellphones.”
Sherrill’s plans for charging forward into the digital age also include changing the way people make payments to the circuit clerk’s office.

“One of my top priorities as clerk will be to allow our customers to pay by credit or debit card, not only in our office but from the comfort of home,” Sherrill revealed, noting he has studied other clerk’s offices that have recently made the transition. “Some of the places I’ve consulted say they have seen a reduction in visits to their office approaching 30 percent.”

Sherrill also has an idea to make things easier for jurors. “Presently we have a line jurors call to find out if their cases have been cancelled,” Sherrill said, pointing out over 80 percent of cases docketed for jury trial get postponed or settled. “Why not make it easier and allow jurors to opt-in to get phone alerts immediately once we know their case is off? We do it for schools, ballgames and churches. Why not for jurors?”
Sherrill noted he plans on keeping the entire staff.

“For 28 years you’ve trusted me to keep you in tune with the courts, now I’m asking you to trust me to be your circuit court clerk,” Sherrill said, asking for your vote in the Democratic primary May 1.