Honoring Janice Atkinson, County Clerk-Recorder Assessor Registrar of Votersby Representative Mike Thompson
Posted on 2013-02-14
in the house of representatives
Thursday, February 14, 2013
Mr. THOMPSON of California. Mr. Speaker, I rise today, along with my
colleague Jared Huffman, to recognize Janice Atkinson, who is retiring
as county clerk-recorder assessor and registrar of voters.
Jancie Atkinson is a third generation Sonoma County native and comes from a long line of public servants. She began her public service career in election administration in 1972 with the Registrar of Voters Division of the County Clerk's Office. She worked her way up through the division, was appointed division chief in 1979 and assumed the position of assistant department head in 1995. She was elected to the position of County Clerk-Recorder Assessor of the County of Sonoma on June 6, 2006, and assumed office on January 8, 2007.
Ms. Atkinson's primary area of expertise is in the field of election administration. As Assistant Registrar of Voters, she headed the division responsible for the conduct of all elections in Sonoma County including city, school and special district elections. The division maintains the files of approximately 600 elected officials, 249,554 registered voters and the boundaries of all political subdivisions in the County.
Under Ms. Atkinson's leadership, Sonoma County removed barriers to participation in the democratic process by administering a highly successful vote-by-mail program. In November 2006, Sonoma County's voter turnout of 75.49 percent exceeded the statewide average turnout by almost 20 percent. Sonoma County's high voter turnout can be attributed to the high number of permanent absentee voters in the County (roughly 52 percent of the registered voters) and the efforts of the department to keep the voter files up-to-date. Ms. Atkinson implemented an accessible voting system for voters with disabilities, all while maintaining paper-based voting systems, assuring voter confidence in elections.
Ms. Aktinson was an active member in the California Association of Clerks and Election Official from 1976-2012. She served on the board of directors from 2002-2012, as Correspondence Secretary from 1988-2011 and [[Page E147]] as a member of the County Recorder's Association of California from 2001-2012. She also was a member of the California Assessors' Association from 2007-2012 and the Bay Area Assessor's Association 2007-2012, serving as its president in 2010. She has been a member of the Sonoma County Historical Records Commission since 2000 and is recognized throughout the state for her knowledge of the California Elections Code and voting procedures.
Ms. Atkinson is a longtime supporter of the Cloverdale Boys and Girls Club and served as the lead public information officer for Sonoma County during disasters, providing vital information to those impacted by floods, mudslides and fires.
Mr. Speaker, Janice Atkinson has a long and distinguished career in service to Sonoma County and it is therefore appropriate that we acknowledge her today and wish her well in her retirement.