JEFFERSON TOWNSHIP — The swearing in of re-elected Scioto County Recorder Gail Alley was an emotional moment, and one that undoubtedly will be remembered, as Alley was sworn in by her father, Charles Harris, Jefferson Township Trustee on Tuesday.
Harris stood with Bible in hand at the Glendale Senior Center in Lucasville, prepared to perform a task of swearing in Alley. Harris declared it to be a privilege and at times sounded as if he could break down in tears.
“It is a privilege to be able to swear my daughter in. I have tried to think of what to say and how to say it,” Harris said. “I don’t know of too many other fathers in the state of Ohio or the United States that will get a privilege like this to swear in your daughter. I do count it a privilege, I really do. She has been a great daughter, along with my daughter Lisa and my grandchildren.”
Harris addressed the audience, spoke of how each person and all of his family are a blessing to him.
“I consider you all family,” Harris said. “It was 11 years ago that I was on this stage also, I could probably stand here and talk for about three or four days about all of the blessings of my family. You are all a blessing to me. I may not be one to you, but that’s all right. I just try to do my best.”
Alley said she sought the approval of Scioto County Prosecutor Mark Kuhn to have her father swear her in as Recorder.
“When I knew that I was going to have to be sworn in again, I was trying to think about who I wanted to do it, and I approached Mark Kuhn, the county prosecutor and asked if my dad could do it because he is a township trustee,” Alley said. “He (Kuhn) checked, and came back to me and said that my father could do it, as long as you or he are in his township. This just happened to fall on my dad’s birthday, which is today as well as the Jefferson Township Trustee Board meeting.”
Alley said her father’s response was overwhelming, something she considers wonderful.
“When I asked my father to do the swearing in, and he said he would be more than proud and felt privileged to do it,” Alley said. “I just think it is wonderful. The first time of being sworn in was a big “to do,” because it was my first time being elected, but this is my second time and I just think it is wonderful that he was able to do it for me.”
Alley is looking forward to four more years of service, continuing work that she has already started.
“My plan is to continue doing what I am doing, to make the office the best that we can and to help the people of Scioto County to have access to their land records and to be able to have access to anything that they need from our office,” Alley said. “We also want to help the veterans with the veterans ID’s, that’s a program that we started three years ago and it has been a great program. We have helped a lot of veterans obtain IDs that they never had so it has been a blessing.”
Alley said she is accompanied by a very supportive staff.
“My staff has been a blessing,” Alley said. “Scott Campbell has been my chief deputy. He and I have worked together for 24 years, and both started about one year apart. He and I have been through thick and thin, and he’s got my back and I’ve got his back, and all of my staff is the same way, so I’m blessed.”
Reach Portia Williams at 740-464-3862, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.