Moffat County says goodbye to elected officials, welcomes new | CraigDailyPress.com

Moffat County says goodbye to elected officials, welcomes new

Janelle O'Dea

— Next week, Moffat County will say "hello" to a new county assessor, treasurer, commissioner and sheriff. But first, the community has to say goodbye to Tim Jantz, Elaine Sullivan, Tom Mathers and Robert Razzano.

Sheriff leaves with a resting sadness

It's often difficult to find the right words to express gratitude to those you've served, and it was no different for Moffat County Sheriff Tim Jantz when asked about his departure from what many consider a noble position in the community.

"I can't even express … I can't find the words to say 'thank you' to people," Jantz said. "The day I was elected, it was humbling, humbling to the point of bringing me to my knees."

Jantz spent the last eight years of his career serving as Moffat County sheriff — a difficult role that many think he did extremely well.

"I think he's been a wonderful sheriff and a good friend," said Moffat County Clerk and Reporter Lila Herod. "He's dedicated to the community, he does a great job and he's well-loved."

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His law enforcement career in Moffat County may have come to an end, but he always will call Northwest Colorado home.

"Even though I may not be working here, my home is in Maybell," Jantz said. "I consider all of Moffat County my family."

Jantz, who was term limited as Moffat County sheriff, recently took a position as an investigator for the Colorado Department of Revenue in Grand Junction, helping the state regulate the marijuana industry.

His wife, Ute Jantz, also is leaving her post as the director of the Moffat County Housing Authority, moving into a new role as director of the Delta Housing Authority.

The couple hasn't finalized where they might live in the future, and Jantz currently is living out of a camper in the interim.

Regardless of the sorrow Tim Jantz feels about leaving his sheriff role, he's excited to see KC Hume take the helm of the Sheriff's Office.

"He's not only a colleague, but he's like my own brother," Hume said. "We've been close for so long. I've already told him that I'm immensely proud of him."

Hume has similar feelings toward Jantz and said the two have been friends for more than 20 years.

"He is a great man, exceptional law enforcement officer and phenomenal sheriff, a sheriff who served the citizens of Moffat County and his deputies with honor, professionalism and compassion," Hume said in a text message.

Elaine Sullivan treasures her years with Moffat County

Craig native Elaine Sullivan's journey working for Moffat County began 33 years ago when she became employed at the Moffat County Clerk's Office in 1981. She worked in the clerk's office for all 33 years except the last four.

She spent her last years as Moffat County's treasurer.

"I think it's life changing when you change to a different office, whether you're still with the county or not," Sullivan said. "It's entirely different; it's been a great job and learning experience."

She said the main difference between the two roles she filled was just the expanse of the work.

"We're still working toward the same goal, for the constituents, but we obviously are working with a larger amount of money and keeping the funds balanced," she said.

Sullivan said she has no plans to move out of Craig in retirement and will be spending more time on her family's ranch.

"I love Craig," she said. "It's a great place and a great place to raise kids."

She also plans to spend free time volunteering with Freedom Hooves and the St. Michael's soup kitchen. And she's excited to be able to see her grandkids in California and southern Colorado more often.

"It's one of those happy-sad things when I'm retiring because I'm thinking I'm not going to walk through those doors anymore," Sullivan said. She said she appreciates all of the support Moffat County has provided her during her years of service.

Her successor and chief deputy of the Moffat County Treasurer's Office Linda Peters told the Craig Daily Press in November that Sullivan was "the best thing for her," while working for the county. Peters and Sullivan have worked closely together for the past few years.

"She helped me build my confidence, and I helped her," Peters said in November.

Chairman of Moffat County Commissioners vacates seat

Tom Mathers said although he's looking forward to having more time to himself and spending time at Mathers Bar, the establishment that's been in his family for years, he'll miss working for the county and working with its employees.

"I want to keep the friends I've made," Mathers said. "It's just been great; the support from the community on all of the decisions we made has all been good. You can't make everyone happy."

He's especially proud of the relationship he's helped build between county employees and city employees.

He said while he supports commissioners standing behind the coal industry, he has a reminder for them, too.

"We are the three CEOs of the largest company in Moffat County, and that's the county," Mathers said. "We have the budget the needs of everyone."

While he will miss the public service aspect of his job and working with fellow Commissioners John Kinkaid and Chuck Grobe, he also loves the idea of unplanned retirement.

"My whole life has been waking up and not knowing what I've got to do (that day); that's what makes it exciting," Mathers said. Mathers will likely spend some of his free time building, too. He has already built five cabins at the Wilderness Ranch in Craig.

John Kinkaid will become the chairman of the Moffat County commissioners, and Frank Moe will take Mathers' seat as commissioner.

"I hope Frank will do a good job," Mathers said. "I hope he stays in Moffat County and is a Moffat County Commissioner instead of trying to play the role of a state rep or state senator."

Moe said his primary goal is to be a part of a strong board of county commissioners, and he hopes to work on the economy and jobs. Next week, Moe will attend a county commissioner training held by Colorado Counties, Incorporated.

"I'm looking forward to getting that specialized training," Moe said.

Robert Razzano's assessment of his public service

Although Razzano has served Moffat County for 34 years, ending with one four-year term in the assessor's office, he still feels like he isn't finished.

"The public's been good to me for so many years that I almost feel like I owe them to stay in public service field, to pay off my debt to the community," Razzano said.

After he hands the assessor reigns over to Chuck Cobb, Razzano said he hopes to stay in some sort of public service job, though he's not sure what exactly it will be. He did say he'd like to stay in Moffat County.

Razzano previously served as county appraiser for 12 years and county treasurer for eight years before running for assessor.

He said he's "not really a vacation guy" and doesn't have too much planned for his free time. In fact, he's hoping to not have a lot of time between leaving the assessor's office and finding a new public service gig.

"They elected me three times, so I owe a lot to the community," Razzano said.

Cobb said Razzano's shoes will be "tough to fill, for sure," and the two have been working on the transition quite a bit together.

"Robert and the assessor's office staff have been very helpful trying to help me get my feet on the ground," Cobb said.

Contact Janelle O’Dea at 970-875-1795 or jodea@CraigDailyPress.com or follow her on Twitter @jayohday.

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