The Mills Adler and H. Sydney Duncombe awards were presented during the opening President’s Welcome Event at the IAC Annual Conference in Boise Monday night. A strong and effective organization is dependent upon the involvement of many dedicated individuals. IAC (including all of its component associations) strives to be a strong and effective organization, supporting the important role of county government, from which its members can draw knowledge, gain experience, and share problems. Such a goal cannot be achieved without members that are willing to give of themselves for the betterment of the organization. Congratulations to all of this year’s recipients!
Sharon Worley began working for Payette County in 1996 and was elected as County Assessor in 2011. The current president of the Idaho Association of County Assessors, she is also a certified State of Idaho Appraiser since 1998. Her continuing education classes serve to bring her county office up-to-date in all matters that have to do with assessment.
She is also a member of the International Association of Assessing Officers and the Idaho Association of Assessment Personnel and serves on IAC’s Environment, Energy and Land Use and Intergovernmental Affairs Committees.
A board member of the non-profit “Class of 72”, she has helped to raise over $75,000 for local community needs.
Patty Temple first joined the team at Minidoka County in January 1987. She stayed for nearly 11 years before an enticing greener pasture lured her away, but she returned to the county less than 3 months later. She continued to work in the Assessor’s Office for the next 6 years before she moved into the Auditor’s office where she gave another 6 ½ years as deputy auditor. Temple decided that instead of having one job, she chose to become a woman of many; she was then sworn into office as the Clerk of the District Court on January 10, 2011.
Shortly after taking office, she was honored with the 2011-2012 “Woman of Achievement” award by the Rupert Business and Professional Women. In 2011, she sat on the IAC Health and Human Services Committee; in 2015 and 2016, she was on the IAC Legislative Committee as the IACRC Representative; and this year, on the Intergovernmental Affairs Committee; she is a member of the PMT Foundation as well as a member of the Rupert Rotary Club. While Deputy Assessor, Temple was the instigator in creating Minidoka County’s Good Will Fund which was originally started so that no child in the county went without a gift for Christmas.
She and her husband have been married for 42 years. They have 2 children and 3 grandchildren. Patty misses her adorable grandsons and has taken the steps to officially spend as much time as possible spoiling them by retiring this week.
Helen Edwards began her county career in 1983 as a deputy clerk. She was appointed Clerk in 1995, then won the position of Clerk in 1997. She served her county in this capacity for nearly 20 years. She tried retirement for four months but missed being of service. Edwards was appointed to the Board of County Commissioners in 2006 and has been a voice for her community since that time. October 1, 2017, will mark thirty-four years of dedicated service.
She is as enthusiastically devoted to her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren as is to all the missions she embraces.
She has served as an active member of the IAC Legislative Committee and is the current chair of IAC’s Health and Human Services Committee. In her community, she is a member of the Gooding County Memorial Hospital District and a member of the South Central Behavior Health Board. She was awarded the Community Star Award from Magic Valley Bank, now Columbia Bank.
Dotti Owens took office in January of 2015, bringing to the office an A. A. in Criminal Justice, a B.A. in Anthropology, a B.A. in Criminal Justice, a Master’s Degree in Criminology and certification in Medicolegal Death Investigation. She has also advanced her office by gaining a second accreditation from the National Association of Medical Examiners, making her office the 2nd in the Nation to be dually accredited from the International Association of Coroners and Medical Examiners.
Owens serves on the NACo Human Service and Education Steering Committee, the Idaho Governor’s Child Fatality Review Team and the Idaho Opioid Abuse and Overdose Strategic Planning Workgroup.
This passionate, dedicated individual has a vision and forethought that has rapidly progressed the office of the Ada County Coroner in the art of death investigation in her short tenure.
This recipient of the Mills Adler award works as the sole prosecutor in a county of under 5,000 people. Zach Pall handles everything from major cases to traffic infractions, contract review to mental commitments for the County.
This individual was a graduate of Moscow High School and went on to obtain a bachelor’s degree from Pitzer College in Claremont, California with a double major in political science and European studies. After graduation, he interned with the Czech Republic President Vaclav Havel. Pall modestly states he “Mostly wrote letters saying, “I’m sorry, President Havel will be unable to attend your Bar Mitzvah or whatever.” He did get a chance to work in the castle and to learn how citizens come together to create a healthy democracy.
He later attended Yale Divinity School acquiring a two-year degree and worked with a local mediation dispute resolution center.
When that project ended, he took another look at law school and enrolled in the Benjamin N Cardozo School of Law in New York City. Pall discovered that he really liked the law.
His commitment to the public side and his interest in mediation resolution brought him to County government. He states that his prosecutor position provides the opportunity for working on both felony and misdemeanor cases.
Patti Bolen began her career in law enforcement 35 years ago as a deputy sheriff. Running for election in 2004 seemed to be the next logical step.
This sheriff deals with drunk drivers, family fights, and burglaries as every law enforcement officer has, and has supervised and led men and women in the most hazardous of situations. In 2013, a nationwide manhunt was underway for a kidnapper who abducted a young girl from California. The kidnapper and child were located in the backcountry. The FBI and dozens of law enforcement officers descended on this lightly populated area of Idaho and Bolen coordinated with the FBI to bring the young girl home safely.
She has been an active member of the Idaho Sheriffs Association, Western States Sheriffs Association and the Idaho Association of Counties. She served as 2nd and 1st Vice President as well as President of the Sheriffs’ Association and currently is serving as the Immediate Past President. She also serves on ISA’s Jail Standards and Operations Committees, as well as the ISA Waterways subcommittee. During her tenure as President, she lost her lifetime partner Larry Bolen. This was a tragic and painful event, however, she carried on in her personal and professional life and demonstrated to those around her how her strength and dedication to duty led her through the most troubling of times.
Radene Barker has lived 46 years in the community she serves. She and her husband have 6 children and 13 grandchildren. With her family, she enjoys outdoor activities and travel.
She is a member of the Pocatello-Chubbuck Chamber of Commerce, Chairperson for the United Way Bannock County, a member of IAC, IACT, NACO, NACCTO and has taken advantage of the many hours of education made available through these organizations.
Barker is most proud of the investment policy she created at the county. Through that policy, taxpayer funds are invested with decisions that take into account safety, liquidity and yield.
She has served a total of 25 years in the Bannock County Treasurer’s Office, eleven of the last years as County Treasurer. She credits much of her success to her loyal, hard-working staff.
This year’s winner of the Sydney Duncombe Award for Excellence in County Government has served his county for over 40 years.
Gene Kuehn has served on numerous committees within the Idaho Association of County Assessors. His vast knowledge of Idaho Statutes and Rules has helped to define how the position of County Assessor has evolved through time.
His many testimonies before the Idaho Legislature have helped to shape legislation that would affect the majority of Idaho taxpayers rather than the minority of property owners.
Kuehn has been a guiding influence in the molding of the Assessor’s manual, a guidebook that provides baseline standards throughout Idaho.
One of his passions is the education of youth regarding the role of taxes and the funding of school budgets. His mini-sessions on tax distribution are presented to teens at their schools. He has made these sessions open to adults so that they too can understand how their taxes work to shape our future.
This individual has provided many seasons of coaching community athletic teams. He has helped to coach youth softball, soccer and even coached the BSU rugby squad.
Kuehn was the first recipient of the “Office Holder of the Year” from Thomson Reuters. This award is given annually to an individual who has demonstrated effective leadership of a complex technical project. He also launched an upgrade to the assessment software system of Canyon County and the State of Idaho. This system is now used by Assessors, Treasurers, Auditors, and Commissioners.