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Although the 2014 primary election is still months away, Owen countians can already expect some major changes beginning in 2015.
Owen County Judge-executive Carolyn Keith has formally announced today that she will not seek re-election for a second full term in the office she has held since being appointed in early 2009.
Keith was appointed to the office by Gov. Steve Beshear following the resignation of former county judge-executive Billy O’Banion in February of 2009.
In the 2010 primary, Keith sought a full term against fellow Democrat Owenton Mayor Doug West and won. She ran uncontested in the 2010 general election.
Before serving as county judge-executive, Keith spent 33 years in the Owen County Circuit Clerk’s Office, serving as chief deputy clerk for 11 of those years and circuit clerk for 17.
Keith, the first female county judge in Owen County history, said not seeking re-election would allow her more time with family.
“I think it’s important to know how long to stay in a position,” Keith said. “I have two grandchildren in Springfield, exactly 90 miles from my house and I’d like to spend more time with them. There are a lot of interests that I’d like to pursue, clubs and church work that I haven’t been as involved in since I took office.”
Today is the first day to file for election in the May 2014 primary, and Keith said she hopes anyone considering filing for the office of county judge knows how to say no.
“You cannot play favorites,” Keith said. “You have to have the ability to make some difficult decisions and deal with the public reaction from those decisions. If something’s not honest or it’s not something you can legally do, you just have to say no. And if you can’t do that, you don’t need to be (in the office of county judge).”
Owen County Clerk Joan Kincaid announced earlier this year that she would not seek re-election in 2014, after serving as county clerk since 2007.
Potential candidates in the May 2014 election will have from today until Jan. 28, 2014 to file.
Kincaid said she expects some potential candidates to file today, but some will likely wait until the last filing day.
Those who are considering running for magistrate or constable should check with the county clerk’s office for descriptions of the new magisterial lines to know the exact location of their potential district.