Clerk, Deputy Clerk and Elections Specialist
Receive Prestigious CERA Certification
The El Paso County Clerk and Recorder’s Office is pleased to announce that three more staff members have received the prestigious CERA (Certified Elections/Registration Administrator) certification through the Election Center’s Professional Education Program. County Clerk and Recorder Wayne Williams, Clerk and Recorder Chief Deputy Chuck Broerman, and Elections Specialist Brian McLellan attained the certification which is the highest professional election related achievement.
The national CERA designation is accomplished only through a multi-year course of study conducted by the Election Center’s Professional Education Program and completion of twelve core courses taught by the Master's in Public Administration faculty of Auburn University (Auburn, Alabama). The courses range from ethics, to voter registration and elections law, planning, communications, and voter participation, among others. The intent of the program is to professionalize the management of voter registration and elections administration in promoting and preserving public trust in the democratic process.
“This is the highest designation available to elections and voter registration officials,” said R. Doug Lewis, director of the Center. “Of more than 21,000 elections and voter registration officials throughout America, this year’s graduating class of 58 professionals takes us to 849 election officials who have achieved the CERA status. This is an outstanding accomplishment.”
Speaking of the three newly certified individuals, Lewis said “It is a measure of their dedication to making democracy work in El Paso County and to exemplify the very best in their service to your citizens. It takes an unusual commitment to have several people within an office pursue a demanding and challenging educational program. It also assures El Paso County that the very best in management techniques, technologies, and processes will be implemented.”
“These truly are the people who make democracy possible,” Lewis said. “Wayne, Chuck, and Brian and other CERA professionals serve as the nation’s protectors of the democratic process. Because of them, Americans have a trust and public confidence in the election process. They have assurance that the system is fair, free, honest and accurate. In many parts of the world, citizens have no faith in the form of democracy offered in their home countries. The importance of what they’re doing for El Paso County is incredible but rarely noticed…unless something goes wrong.”
Clerk and Recorder Wayne Williams offered his thoughts on the accomplishment by adding, “Democracy is a fragile concept. We could lose it easily if we misuse or abuse the process. This program reminds us of our part in maintaining and protecting democratic principles. It also teaches excellent management skills directly related to voter registration and elections.”
“I have always felt my job was special, but this program emphasized the ethical commitment we have to the democratic process and our role in protecting the public’s interest,” Brian McLellan said.
“Not many people know what we do,” Chief Deputy Chuck Broerman said. “But we really serve as their representatives to make sure the process is fair to all. The CERA program teaches us that we act as the referees to make sure the rules are followed by all.”
To help save the county money, the three will not be attending the formal graduation ceremony in San Francisco.