GALVESTON — With hundreds of family and friends watching over them, Galveston County’s newest elected officials were ceremonially sworn into office yesterday.
Fourteen individuals stood up before the assembled crowd at the Galveston County Justice Center and pledged to uphold and protect the laws of the U.S. constitution and, in the words of many, “the Great State of Texas.”
The group included Sherriff Henry Trochesset, who was elected in November, to replace one-term Sheriff Freddie Poor.
Trochesset is the 26th man since 1838 to serve as county sheriff and likely the first Republican in the office since at least the Reconstruction period after the Civil War.
A 28-year veteran of the sheriff’s office, Trochesset told the crowd that he aimed to keep his office accessible and open to suggestions.
“If anyone thinks that I need to be doing a little different, don’t hesitate to call,” Trochesset said. “I’m your servant. You elected me, you put me in office, I serve you. And to the best of my ability I intend to for as long as you want me here.”
After taking his oath, Trochesset swore in his deputies, and then left the courthouse to go to a separate ceremony to issue promotions and reorganize the leadership in the sheriff’s department.
Also sworn in were new district court judges Michelle Slaughter and Kerry Neves, new county Commissioner Ryan Dennard and new constables Clint Wayne Brown and Rick Sharp.
Seven re-elected officials, 56th district court Judge Lonnie Cox, county Tax Assessor Cheryl Johnson, Justice of The Peace Toni Randall and three constables, Terry Petteway, Derreck Rose and Jimmy Fullen, also reaffirmed their oaths at the public ceremony.
County District Clerk John Kinard, who won a special election for his seat, took a ceremonial oath of office.
“Today, we start whatever the new year brings us. Our forefathers decided that one of the things that the new year would bring us would be new government,” Cox said. “These are the people that will stand up in front of you and they take an oath, they will pledge to serve you.”
The official swearing-in of all of the county officials took place earlier in the day. The later ceremony allowed the newly minted public servants to thank their mentors, friends, supporters and family for sticking with them during a seemingly endless election.