Shelby Co. Clerk hot on the heels of incumbent in County Judge race

Published: Feb. 24, 2014 at 10:37 PM CST
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CENTER, TX (KTRE) - As Shelby County Judge Incumbent Rick Campbell continues his campaign trail for re-election, his opponent, County Clerk Allison Harbison, is hot on his heels.

Despite the desire to win, each candidate says they have no hard feelings towards the other.

"I have a good opponent who is out there working hard against me and it makes you work harder when you know that you got an opponent that is just as qualified," said Campbell.

"I've been a real supporter of his and helped him and anybody that walks into my office and it just seemed like the timing was right to me," said Harbison.

Harbison has worked with five county judges during her time with the Shelby County Clerk's office, and says she always knew she was going to eventually run for the position.

"I think the last three county judges have done a great job. Judge Watson is the reason we have this beautiful historic courthouse refurbished, Judge Tomlin worked closely with the historic commission to continue the upkeep and everything, and Judge Campbell has been really good at preserving the history," Harbison said. "I would just like to continue that path and you know, I just think I can make a difference."

Harbison says she started working as County Clerk in 2001 and knows the inner workings of what goes into the County Judge position.

"I was in the passenger seat because everything that goes through the judges office usually comes through the County Clerk's office," Harbison said.

And she says life experiences have given her an upper hand.

"I was raised on a chicken farm with horses and cows. I was a country girl. So I know the hardships that go on with farm life and also I've always had to work. I know what it's like to worry about whether you're going to be able to buy diapers, or formula or are you going to be able to pay your light bill," Harbison said.

Campbell says he is confident he is going to get reelected because he is familiar with the position.

"I'm seven generation both sides of my family from Shelby County, grew up here all my life, ran the cattle auction, been involved in economic development and I love this county, and I love promoting it and doing what I can to make it better," Campbell said.

And some of those things Campbell is hoping to bring to the county is a new IT department.

"I would like for us to have one. I would like to see all of our departments have one software program packets that we all communicate on the same software packet. That's one of my goals. As far as the infrastructure goes, I'm going to continue to work on the roads and make sure that we have the best county roads in the state," Campbell said. "I want Shelby County to be a beacon, I want it to be a county that you look at and say I want to be like Shelby County."

No matter the outcome, the opponents say they are just looking forward to the future.

Early voting is going on right now at the Shelby County Clerk's office every week day from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

The office is located at 124 Austin Street in Center, Texas.

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