The News Courier
Name: Johnny Evans
Personal: Married to Mitzi Fowler of Tanner and we have two children, John Mac and Hannah Beth
Civic affiliations: Member First Baptist Church; former chairman of the board of Save-a-Life Limestone County; recipient of Boys and Girls Club Glenn Blackwell Person of the Year Award; life member of NRA
Educational background: Athens High School graduate; Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Master of Divinity degree; Athens State University; B.S. business administration and B.S. personnel psychology degrees
• Circuit Court Clerks have quite a few responsibilities, the most important of which is keeping track of a multitude of ongoing and upcoming trials. Briefly describe your multitasking abilities and how it will relate to the position.
At present, I am co-owner of four small businesses, including the old Greenbrier Restaurant. As such, I have to keep several things going at one time and prioritize tasks.
At Greenbrier, I am constantly going from one thing to another as I take care of my customers. I take an order, then have to check someone out at the register while I am answering the phone to take a to go order.
It is a never-ending cycle and when I can catch a few minutes, I have to work on things like scheduling, inventory, record keeping, pricing a catering, etc. I then take care of my other businesses with my free time.
• Cutbacks in the Alabama court system has caused problems for court systems, including shorter hours and, in some cases, less staff to work with. What steps will you take to ensure the circuit court clerk’s office runs smoothly?
The state sets the budget and I will have to do the most I can with what I have. I will lead by example setting a good work ethic and helping out in every area.
I am accustomed to hard work as my parents trained me from an early age to work hard and do a job right. I will prioritize and help where I am needed most and cross-train employees as much as possible. Then, after determining where help is needed, I can get the help to where it is needed most.
• The Limestone County Commission has approved renovations to the County Courthouse. The renovations, commissioners say, will greatly improve the legal process by providing additional courtroom space. Are there any other improvements that would enhance or improve the county’s judicial system?
One major improvement is getting all records digitized and accessible to everyone needing them as quickly as possible. The staff at the clerk’s office has been scanning in all records for some time and has almost completed the task.
If the records can be made available to everyone in the system while still keeping non-public records under control, it will save a lot of time for the clerk’s office as well as the judges.
• Briefly explain what steps you will take to ensure taxpayer dollars used by the circuit clerk’s office are spent wisely?
I think Charles Page has set a high standard in this area and I will maintain it. The office employees are already great at what they do and know what they need to do to get the job done, so I see no problem continuing this tradition.
The old saying — “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” — is in order here. I am sure there will be lots of fine tuning with the goal of improving efficiency, but the groundwork is certainly already there.
• As circuit court clerk, what could you personally do to ensure efficiency in the way trials are scheduled and conducted in Limestone County?
Efficient scheduling can be managed by maintaining a close relationship with all judges and their staff in order to set dates and times that are workable with all parties involved, including the district attorney.
Being able to work through scheduling conflicts is one of my areas of expertise as a small business owner with employees.