Jeffco started the new year with a little pomp and circumstance — and a lot of proud family members — when the county swore in its newly elected governmental officials on Jan. 8.
The hearing room in the Jeffco government center was packed with relatives of the new officials waiting to see their loved ones take the oath of office, some for the first time. During the swearing in of District Attorney Peter Weir, his daughter stood by him, right hand raised, reciting the oath with her father.
Weir said his daughter gave him some profound words to share at breakfast that morning.
“ ‘Just tell them you can help change the world by picking up your trash,’ “ Weir quoted his daughter as saying. “That’s a tough act to follow.”
Weir, who most recently served in the DA’s office as senior chief deputy district attorney, was elected to take over for the term-limited Scott Storey.
“It is the highest honor you can have as an attorney to serve as a district attorney with an office like we have here,” Weir said. “It’s a great office. It doesn’t need a lot of revisions and changes. It’s going to be an opportunity to take it to the next level, in respect to some of the programs they’ve started.”
Another official taking the oath for the first time was Casey Tighe. Tighe, a Democrat, won a close race against County Commissioner John Odom, the Republican incumbent who had been appointed to the position in 2011.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Tighe said of the challenges he expects to face. “It’s a big learning curve. Everyone in the county has been helpful and been willing to offer any advice they have.”
After he was sworn in, Tighe’s family gathered for pictures and to share in the celebration of a long journey finally coming to fruition.
“It was really special to have them here. They’ve been very supportive during the campaign. My wife, the boys helped work on the campaign,” Tighe said.
Among those sworn in with Tighe was County Commissioner Faye Griffin, who was unopposed in her bid for re-election in November. This will be the second term for Griffin as a commissioner; she previously served as the county’s clerk and recorder.
“At least I have a little better idea what kind of things will occur,” Griffin said. “I don’t know if you can say it’s going to be easier. There are always going to be issues that pull on each one of us.
“The one thing I feel strongly about: When you have three people, two people can make the decision. And I have been the odd man out at times. But you don’t go up stairs and you’re mad about it. You have to take it that whoever it is that is voting for or against whatever, they’re looking at it through their personal feelings, their background, their ideas.”
Griffin’s swearing in had special meaning because her son surprised her by making the trip from Texas, where he’s stationed in the Army.
“It’s a milestone for her career — for her and for Jefferson County,” said Master Sgt. Walter Griffin. “She’s been sworn in five times in public office.”
Walter called his mother’s rise through the ranks of Jeffco government amazing: She started as a part-time worker in the traffic division, served two terms as clerk and recorder, and now will sit for a second term as county commissioner.
Contact Ramsey Scott at email@example.com or 303-933-2233, ext. 22.