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Three candidates are in line to replace four-term County Clerk Kenny Tabb and two square off in next Tuesday’s Democratic primary.
Debbie Donnelly, 59, serves as chief operating officer in the county clerk’s office and faces Bruce Reeves, 52, who works in the real estate and auction business and is a retired 20-year employee of Kentucky State Police.
The winner of the May 20 primary faces Republican candidate Sandra Byerly. Another Republican candidate, Dwayne E. Mollison Sr., exited the race, citing a number of family health issues. Mollison’s name will appear on the ballot, but postings in every polling place will inform Republican voters that any votes cast on Mollison’s behalf will not be counted, Tabb said.
Debbie Donnelly. Donnelly has spent the last eight years in her current role in the clerk’s office and has worked in the office for 35 years, she said.
Donnelly said her experience would provide a “smooth transition” in the office, should she win the primary and November’s general election.
She cites her experience and “strong work ethic” among reasons to attract votes.
“Thirty-five years experience to me is a no-brainer,” she said. “I have a deep knowledge of this office. I have a strong work ethic and I’m dedicated. I will always be there for the people.”
She said when Tabb came to her and told her he wouldn’t seek another term, she started looking toward a run.
“I’ve had this in the back of my mind for a number of years,” she said. “I knew one day that it would be my day. I love the county clerk’s office.”
A lifelong Hardin County resident, Donnelly has been busy campaigning door-to-door and took two weeks off prior to the primary to campaign.
Bruce Reeves. Long before Tabb decided not to run, Reeves was considering a run for office when Tabb exited.
When he did, Reeves said it still wasn’t a quick decision to seek the office.
“I went back and forth with it and I still had a desire for it,” he said. “I talked about it and prayed about it with my family.”
Reeves cites his career stops as giving him a well-rounded background for the position and said “between all the careers that I have held, they all have been community-based.”
A lifelong resident of Hardin County, Reeves started his professional career as a funeral director at Brown Funeral Home before joining KSP. He left KSP in 2011 and moved into the real estate field.
“I’ve had jobs where I’ve had contact with the public and this is a position that serves the public and offers a service to the public,” he said.
He said while he doesn’t have job-specific experience for the county clerk post, he has dealt with vehicle registration as well as deeds, plats and mortgages in his career.
Jeff D’Alessio can be reached at 270-505-1757 or firstname.lastname@example.org.