Republican incumbents Geary County Sheriff Dan Jackson and Geary County Clerk Rebecca Nordyke both won reelection over their opponents Tuesday.
Nordyke received 5,456 votes to her Democratic opponent Diana Dean’s 3,624 and Jackson received 5,615 votes to his Democratic opponent Fred Reid’s 3,414.
While more than 500 provisional ballots were yet to be counted Tuesday when these results were announced, both of them can consider themselves safe in their offices.
Nordyke said she “felt really humbled and really grateful” to have won reelection.
“I appreciate everyone that voted for me,” she said. “I had lots of support from people encouraging me and praying for me and all of that and I appreciate that very much.”
Nordyke chalks her win up to job experience.
“I think the biggest factor is I’m experienced and I’ve done a lot of things though my career in the different jobs that I’ve held and the things that I’ve done here in Geary County,” she said. “I think people appreciated the experience.”
Plans going forward for Nordyke's office include changes to polling places. Depending on rules and regulations from Secretary of State Scott Schwab’s office, Geary County could have a vote center.
“A vote center allows a voter to vote at any polling location in the county,” she said. “They’re not restricted to a particular place. So there will be a lot of things that we’ll have to do to see if we can accomplish that. The one step that we’ve taken to start that is having our electronic poll pads. There are people that often talk to me about ‘why do I have to go to this certain place?’ So I think it’s something that the voters would be interested in. So I definitely want to explore the possibility and what that would take for us to do that here in Geary County. But again, it’s pending those state regulations and whether we can meet those requirements.”
She believes there will be changes stemming from a changeup on the Geary County Commission. There’s a high likelihood, she said, that Democrat Alex Tyson will replace Republican Commissioner Charles Stimatze and Independent Trish Giordano will replace Republican Commissioner Brad Scholz in January, though their races are closer and votes are still being tabulated.
Jackson said he looked forward to the future as well.
“I’m just very pleased,” he said. “I have lots of plans of things we want to do with the sheriff’s department. And everybody’s happy down there right now. The morale’s higher than it’s ever been. You know, we’ve got a really professional group of people working down there, so it’s a really great place to be.”
Jackson looks forward to the construction of the substation which will house the Geary County Sheriff’s Office’s joint dive team, which it shares with the Junction City Fire Department and which Jackson began assembling after he took office. He also hopes to build the Sheriff’s Office team up through training.
“I’m going to make sure that everybody that works (for the Sheriff’s Office) is the best trained and the best educated so that we’re providing the best service to the citizens of Geary County,” Jackson said. “That’s always my impetus, always my push.”
He believes he won reelection because voters saw what he had done with the Sheriff’s Office and approved of it.
“I hope it’s that everybody — the majority of the people — saw what I’ve done the last year and a half, what we’ve done as a department the last year and a half, and liked what they saw,” he said. “I hope that that’s what has caused this to happen. I hope they liked the transparency, the fact that we’re having these town halls, that we’re talking to everybody. I’m hoping these kinds of things are what made me win."