Letter: Voter supports Neil Kester for Augusta County sheriff
It’s been interesting to read the many letters to the editor declaring who the writers are supporting in the Augusta County sheriff race. With four experienced candidates running that have served many years in local law enforcement, there have been some great stories of each candidate’s character, job skills and service to the community offered up by people who have dealt with each of them over the years. It’s easy to see all of them are great officers and community members.
So in trying to determine who stands out in the field of qualified, dedicated candidates so I can make an informed vote, I decided to look at the responsibilities a county sheriff must carry out and score each candidate accordingly. In addition to what we usually think of as the duties of a law enforcement leader (crime calls, investigations, public safety, drug enforcement, court appearances), a county sheriff must oversee a lot of administrative and management issues we don’t always think of. He is also the face and voice of Augusta County law enforcement in a variety of circumstances. The office requires a well-rounded individual with a diverse set of skills and understanding that can lead in all areas required.
The one absolutely necessary skill that stood out for me is the need for a county sheriff to be knowledgeable enough to manage a large staff with a lot of moving parts and to do it cooperatively with a lot of other agencies. Of the four candidates, I feel the only one with the right kind of experience to do that is Neil Kester. His qualifications, personal connections and common-sense plans for revitalizing the agency are what set him apart from the rest.
I will be voting for Neil Kester on November 3. It’s the smart choice for Augusta County.
– Letter from Tabby Diehl/Weyers Cave