GENESEO — A veteran staffer in the Livingston County Clerk's Office has set her sights on the top job in the department.
Springwater native Mary F. Strickland, currently the deputy clerk, announced her candidacy for clerk this week. She is seeking the endorsement of the Livingston County Republican Committee for the November 2014 general election.
Livingston County Clerk Jim Culbertson, announced his retirement earlier this year. He will serve in office until Dec. 31.
Strickland said her enthusiasm for the clerk's office has not waned in 31 years.
"I love my job today as much as I did 31 years ago," she said. Other than my family, this is my life."
The Wayland High School graduate joined the department at the entry level three decades ago, earning a job through a Civil Service Exam. She has worked her way up through the office since that time.
"I began my career in 1983 as the index clerk, (was) promoted to senior index clerk in 1986, and promoted once again to my current position of deputy county clerk in 1988 under Clerk Margaret McCaughey," she said.
Strickland said her managerial and operational experience has evolved through the years, in step with the department's operations, as the team upgraded technology and improved access to files and records. Supporters say Strickland was a key contributor in the office’s transition from a "paper-only" system of record keeping to an electronic system. She has recently played key roles in implementing programs aimed at protecting citizens against identity theft and automating the filing of Pistol Permit Amendment Forms.
"With my 31 years of experience under two county clerks, I have the necessary experience and qualifications to hold the position of county clerk and run this office and provide the utmost in customer service, while being fiscally responsible, to the people of Livingston County," Strickland said.
Strickland grew up in Springwater and moved to Geneseo in 1990. Strickland has been a member of the Geneseo Republican Committee since 1996 and has served as Treasurer since 2006.
Strickland hopes to earn the Republican Party's backing next month. Should would then collect petition signatures in June. Her candidacy has been endorsed by outgoing clerk, Culbertson.
"Mary has served as deputy clerk under my direction since 1995. There is no other person better prepared or more dedicated to performing the duties of county clerk than Mary," Culbertson said.
The county clerk serves as the clerk of the state supreme and county courts and is responsible for providing files, records, and indexes of papers in legal actions and proceedings. The clerk also maintains judgment dockets and records of monies paid, or ordered to be paid, to court.
Other duties include: recording deeds, mortgages, and liens; filing maps, financing statements, and military discharges; processing pistol permits and passports; qualifying notary public appointments in the county; filing oaths of office of county officials and employees; and acting as the agent of the commissioner of motor vehicles to issue motor vehicle registrations and licenses.