Open sheriff’s seat rare |

Open sheriff’s seat rare

Douglas County voters will have what has been a rare opportunity to weigh in on an open sheriff’s race next year.

With Sheriff Ron Pierini’s announcement last week that he won’t seek a sixth term, it will be the first time since 1974 that county voters won’t have a sitting sheriff to vote for.

Pierini’s announcement came pretty close to 20 years and two months after his appointment to replace Sheriff Jerry Maple.

When his term is up on Dec. 31, 2018, Pierini will have served for 21 years and four months, making him the second longest serving sheriff in Douglas County history.

The top honor doesn’t belong to Maple, who served 20 years and two months, but to Sheriff William D. Park.

Park’s reign as sheriff lasted from 1923 to 1947. Back in those days the sheriff also was assessor, just as today the constitutional offices of clerk and treasurer are combined.

Park finally hung up his badge when commissioners split the offices, and he decided to remain assessor.

Unlike legislative offices, term limits don’t apply to county constitutional offices. The office of sheriff is further distinguished as being the only nonpartisan race among those.

We believe that Pierini has done a great job as sheriff during these past two decades, and that his well-deserved victory lap is just getting started.