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McDonald not seeking reelection as clerk of court

Posted: March 3, 2016 5:45 p.m.
Updated: March 4, 2016 1:00 a.m.

In a brief announcement on the steps of the Kershaw County Courthouse on Tuesday morning, Kershaw County Clerk of Court Joyce McDonald announced she will not run for reelection this November.

“I want to thank Kershaw County for giving me the opportunity to serve as the clerk of court for the past 23 years,” McDonald said with her son, Todd, at her side. “My chief deputy clerk, Janet Hasty, who has over 27 years of experience, will be running for the position and when she files, I will be endorsing her and supporting her.”

Other clerk of court office employees, other court officials and government officials, including Kershaw County Administrator Vic Carpenter, were on hand to congratulate McDonald on her announcement.

McDonald, a Camden High School graduate, first ran for the clerk’s office in 1992. She worked for six years with the county’s probate judge’s office and seven years with First Palmetto Bank. McDonald announced her candidacy that March, seeking the nomination along with two other Republicans, Donna Trapp and Pam Corbett. Due to redistricting, primaries were moved from late June to mid-August. Trapp technically won the primary, but McDonald garnered enough votes to force a runoff that September. The vote tipped her way in the runoff, making McDonald the Republican nominee. She won the clerk of court’s position, defeating Democrat Jane Clyburn, 9,752 votes to 7,131.

Voters most recently reelected McDonald in 2012. As in many years, she ran unopposed. When she announced her reelection at the time, she talked about recent, major changes in technology. Four years earlier, the clerk’s office went live with a now statewide case management system. Since then, common pleas jury and non-jury rosters became accessible through the internet, and online roster notifications are sent to attorneys via email. Also, direct deposit became available for child and alimony payments.

McDonald has served as vice president and president of the S.C. Association of Clerks of Courts and Registers. She has served as chair of the association’s educational and nominating committees, and on the S.C. State Historic Records Advisory and Local Government Records Advisory boards.

Hasty said she would file her candidacy as soon as the filing period opens, which is from noon March 16 through noon March 30. Kershaw County Voter Registration Director John Caughman pointed out his office will be closed Friday, March 25, for Good Friday. Other county offices for which filings must be made during the filing period are Kershaw County Council districts 1, 2 and 3; and Kershaw County Board of Trustees seats 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9.

In addition, those wishing to run for mayor of Camden and the seats currently held by Camden City Council members Alfred Mae Drakeford and Laurie Parks must file petitions by noon July 15.

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