DOBSON — Surry County’s clerk of court, Pam Marion, has announced that she will be retiring at the end of this year.
Marion, 56, has served in that position since 2002 and as of today has worked in the local court system a total of 37 years in the clerk’s and other capacities. She will be stepping down with two years of her present four-year term remaining in order to spend more time with family members.
However, Marion said Tuesday afternoon that she is leaving the post with mixed emotions.
“It is difficult — this has been my whole life,” she said.
Marion explained that one catalyst in the decision to step down as clerk was the retirement in July of her husband Donnie as a magistrate, another key position in the criminal justice system. His career spanned 28 years.
“I just realized that I wanted to spend more time with my family,” Marion added, which includes her husband, daughter and son-in-law, two grandchildren and her mother. “There’s not any of us getting any younger, and I just feel like it’s a good opportunity to do that.”
Marion’s son, Pfc. Adam Marion, a member of the N.C. Army National Guard, was killed in Iraq in April 2008.
While she has opted to retire with her present term as clerk reaching only the halfway mark, Marion said “the time seemed right for me and I did what I thought was best for the office.”
It has 23 employees.
Brendle To Replace
Marion publicly announced the move Tuesday afternoon, but “I had told my staff the week before last,” she said.
Since there was time remaining in her term as clerk, the responsibility then fell to Moses Massey, as the resident Superior Court judge for Surry County, to name a replacement.
That led to the selection this week of Rebecca Brendle, an assistant court clerk who has served in the office for 10 years.
“She is familiar with my duties and I think it will be a very smooth transition for that office,” Marion said of Massey’s choice.
Brendle will finish out the remaining two years of Marion’s term and then have the option of seeking re-election to the post in 2014.
Marion was first elected as clerk of court in 2002 and re-elected in 2006 and 2010.
A lifelong resident of Surry County, she graduated from Surry Central High School and attended Surry Community College before joining the clerk’s office staff on Nov. 21, 1975.
Working in the local court system has been a rewarding career, which Marion said was a result of great support she received over the years.
She thanks God for the opportunity “to be able to retire from a wonderful place and to have good health and also to have the best staff anyone could have possibly had.
“They have made my job much easier — they are dedicated, hardworking and very loyal, ” Marion continued. “I do believe that we have the best (clerk of court) office in the state.”
Marion said she also is grateful to the judges she has worked with, along with District Attorney Ricky Bowman and his staff, Sheriff Graham Atkinson and other members of his department and the county commissioners. “I’m going to miss everyone,” she said.
“Most of all, I want to thank the citizens of this great county for allowing me to serve them for the past 37 years,” the outgoing official said.
While Marion hopes to do more traveling, she said her retirement time is basically a blank slate at this point.
“I look forward to spending more time with my family, especially my two grandchildren.”
Reach Tom Joyce at 719-1924 or firstname.lastname@example.org.