I recently attended the annual Business-Loudoun Schools Partnership breakfast in Lansdowne where business leaders who are actively involved in a private sector partnership with Loudoun County Public Schools, acknowledged the support of local businesses of Loudoun County Public Schools. These local businesses and business leaders provide opportunities for students in our public schools and have developed productive partnerships with the schools to enhance the learning opportunities for students. One of the individuals honored at this event was Wagner Grier, who worked in Loudoun County Public Schools for more than 30 years as a teacher, principal and administrator. I was honored to witness the acknowledgement of Wagner Grier's service as Mr. Grier was a teacher at Loudoun Valley High School in the early 1980's when I attended Valley.
Pictured here with me are Wagner Grier and Damon Putman at the event. Damon was one of my classmates at Loudoun Valley and he now teaches at the Charles Monroe Vocational and Technical School. Congratulations to Mr. Grier and thank you many years of valuable service to Loudoun County.
Bob Klancher, a resident of Ashburn, recently passed away after a long battle with cancer. Hundreds of Loudoun residents attended a visitation and Bob's funeral Mass at St. Theresa's Catholic Church to pay respects to a true public servant and friend and to express sympathy to Bob's wife, Janet, and their family. Bob was a very devoted husband and father and he provided a great example of a committed and loving husband and father. Bob was a faithful member of St. Theresa's Catholic Church in Ashburn and he assisted the church with the design and construction process of the church by using his talents as an architect. He also volunteered his talents as an architect by helping St. John's Church in Leesburg with the design of their church. Bob was involved in several community service projects in the county. Bob was an excellent public servant as he served on the Loudoun County Planning Commission starting in 2004 and served continuously for the past 12 years during significant growth in Loudoun County. Bob Klancher will be missed in our community. Please pray for Janet and the Klancher family as they mourn the loss of Bob Klancher.
Gary M. Clemens, Clerk of the Circuit Court, recently announced the hiring of new employees, the promotion of employees and recognition of long-term service to the Clerk’s Office. Catherine Woodward was recently hired and is part of the civil case management division. Joy Hayes was promoted to senior probate clerk in the probate division. Lauren Smith was promoted to case management deputy clerk in the civil case management division. Anna Lacey was promoted to supervisor in the land records/public services division. Bill Loy, who is the probate manager, was recognized for 42 years of service with the Clerk of the Circuit Court. Mr. Loy has served as a deputy clerk with four circuit court clerks during his tenure.
Picture here (left – right) are: Anna Lacey, Catherine Woodward, Gary Clemens, Joy Hayes, Lauren Smith and Bill Loy.
Congratulations to my friends Pam Jones and Carolyn Howell for their awards. Congratulations to the numerous community leaders who were recognized by the Chamber for community service in 2015.
The National Association of Counties has recognized Gary Clemens and his office for innovative and effective county government programs that enhance services for county residents by presenting a 2015 Achievement Award for providing enhanced access to historic court records to Loudoun's citizens. Pictured here are Gary Clemens, Clerk of the Circuit Court with his team of employees who worked with Clerk Clemens on digitizing historic court records to improve access following the presentation of the award to this team.
Clerk Clemens' efforts commenced in 2002 when he began an aggressive program to better preserve, conserve and display Loudoun's valuable historic court records. "We have a unique collection of court records dating back to 1757 because many clerks' offices in Virginia simply do not have all of their records," stated Clemens. During the Civil War, many court records were burned, stolen, moved or otherwise lost during the war.
Clerk Clemens enjoyed a pancake breakfast hosted by the Ashburn Volunteer Fire Department at Dominion Trail Elementary School in Ashburn. Gary greeted Ashburn residents and spent time talking with some of the valuable volunteers with Ashburn Volunteer Fire Department. Pictured here with Clerk Clemens are Okea Dokia and his family after enjoying a nice hot breakfast together. Okea is a volunteer firefighter with the Ashburn Volunteer Fire Department and his commitment to community service is appreciated and valued.
There are numerous individuals in our community who volunteer with our local fire and rescue volunteer departments throughout Loudoun County. Clerk Clemens is grateful for their individual and collective contributions to the community. There were several high school students from Broad Run High School and Stone Bridge High School who volunteered at the pancake breakfast. These local high students are commended for volunteering their time to assist the local volunteer fire department.
Gary Clemens was recently certified as a court management instructor with the National Center for State Courts. In August 2014, the Virginia Court Clerks' Association adopted a new career development program for clerks of court and deputy clerks throughout Virginia. As part of this new career development program, an agreement was developed with the National Center for State Courts to certify clerks of court to teach courses in the career development program.
The mission of the National Center for State Courts is to improve the administration of justice through leadership and service to state courts. At the First National Conference of the Judiciary, held in Williamsburg, Virginia, in 1971, Chief Justice Warren Burger called for the creation of a central resource for the state courts—a "national center for state courts." The National Center for State Courts began operations that same year at the headquarters of the Federal Judicial Center in Washington, D.C., before moving to its permanent headquarters in Williamsburg in 1978.
The Leadership Loudoun Youth program, a week-long leadership program designed to introduce youth to leadership concepts and provide exposure to and interaction with local business, government and community leaders, permits students from Loudoun County public schools and private schools to learn about county government, the significant issues in the County, the anticipated challenges facing government leaders and the possible resolutions to address challenges in the County. The program is open to rising sophomores, juniors and seniors, who spend the majority of the week observing leadership in action.
Clerk of the Circuit Court Gary M. Clemens visited with the students in the Leadership Loudoun Youth program recently. Clemens explained his role as a constitutional officer in the County, the functions of the circuit court clerk’s office and the challenges faced by this constitutional office in a fast-growing County. Clemens also took the opportunity to present current challenges faced by state and local government and encouraged these students to make preparations to help resolve these challenges in the future. “You are the future leaders of this County and you are the next generation of professionals who will be able to resolve many of these issues or develop plans to address these challenges,” stated Clemens as he made his presentation to the group. Pictured below is Clemens speaking to the students during the lunch portion of their program hosted by Palio’s Restaurant in Leesburg.
Clerk Clemens recently attended the Chamber of Commerce 2015 Valor Awards program at the National Conference Center. The Valor Awards program is an annual event that recognizes our public safety professionals for their courageous acts of valor.
Several citizens were also recognized for acts of heroism and valor. Pictured here (left to right) are Gary Clemens, Clerk of the Circuit along with Betsy Davis, the Mayor of Middleburg, Sgt. Mark Davis of the Leesburg Police Department and Tony Buffington, who is a candidate for Blue Ridge District Supervisor.
Gary has served as the clerk of the circuit court for Loudoun County for the past 16 years. Gary is seeking re-election as clerk of the circuit court in Loudoun County one more time.
With his leadership, vision and innovative approaches, Gary has implemented numerous customer service improvements, mostly using technologies, while maintaining fiscal integrity in pursuit of these improvements. Ever mindful that he is the custodian of the public’s trust, Gary is very fiscally conservative in the allocation of the people’s resources for his office.
Gary has lived in Loudoun County for 49 years, first residing in Sterling during his infant and toddler years. He resided in Leesburg briefly while the family home in Hamilton was being constructed. He was raised by John and the late Shirley Clemens in the small town of Hamilton where he resided for 23 years. After graduating from Loudoun Valley High School in Purcellville, Gary attended James Madison University. While attending JMU, Gary met his future bride, Maria, who lived in Arlington.