Judge Joe English is hoping not to refer to the county employee list for too long. He follows Personnel Director Blanche King and County Attorney Jeff Davis to meet and greet fellow employees who work in the courthouse.
"This is Joe English." "Glad to meet you. How are you?," is repeated in each office.
English has over 300 fellow employees to get to know. "I'm meeting with road and bridge in the morning at 7 and there's still people I haven't met. I don't know their name, and I think that's important to establish that relationship early," explained English.
English wastes no time adjusting to a new desk, office, and job. On Friday, he was a hospital lab manager. The last few days have been bittersweet.
"I've been at Memorial for the last 17 years and, so, I always considered that home, and certainly, I've spent as much time working there as I had at home, and it was a little bit emotional," said the soft-spoken judge.
English says he's ready to take on a new career and new challenges. He plans to keep a close watch on county spending. He's also interested in how other counties are dealing with jail overcrowding.
"There are some counties that are similar demographically to Nacogdoches County, and I would like for a group to go to those counties and see what they're doing -- if they're doing things a little bit differently -- and, so, that is another option we need to explore."
After observing almost a full year of county commission meetings, English will lead a lenghthy one on Monday. In a couple of weeks, he'll be off to new county judge seminars. He has two to attend. A lot of learning is in store during January for the newly elected official.