Candidate Survey: Doug Arnold for Anne Arundel County Clerk of the Court
Office Sought and District
Clerk of the Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County
Indiana Wesleyan University, B.S. Business and Political Science.
Professional in Human Resources certification from the HR Certification Institute
SHRM-CP certification from the Society for Human Resource Management
Manager for the Clerk of the Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County
Through community service and volunteering and activities at my church, I have gained a great appreciation for the power of communities coming together for the common good. My goal is to work for a common purpose for our county in supporting families, growing businesses and safer communities.
Elected to the Republican State Central Committee of Anne Arundel County in 1990 and 1994. Founded the North County Republican Club in 1991. Named the 2016 Republican Man of the Year by the Anne Arundel County GOP and named the 2016 Grassroots Activist by the Maryland Republican Party.
Why are you running for office?
Twenty-seven years ago, on March 11, 1991, I walked through the doors of the courthouse for the first time as an employee. I had no idea at the time that I was embarking on a career in public service at the Anne Arundel County Circuit Courthouse. I soon discovered that within the courthouse walls, a unique culture built upon a shared commitment to the mission of justice. The true driver of that culture, I found, was a passion for public service and promoting a fair, equitable and accessible justice system for the citizens and communities of Anne Arundel County.
That passion is a driving force for me in serving the public as a member of the office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court and it’s why I am seeking the elected position of Clerk of the Court.
Who do you consider your political role model, and why?
I have worked for Bob Duckworth, our current Clerk, since 1991. Bob is a man of integrity and character. He cares deeply about the people he serves and has been a true servant leader for the people of Anne Arundel County. As a mentor, he has demonstrated to me how to be authentic, transparent and most of all kind and respectful to the people we serve. In his public and private life, Bob works to do the job well, respect people and act with integrity. Bob Duckworth demonstrates the values that my dad and mom instilled in me.
What is your favorite book about politics and policy, and why?
An American Life by Ronald Reagan
Growing up in the ’80s, the world was a scary place. The cold war with the USSR felt like we were on the brink of war, the economy was stuck in “malaise,” and Americans needed to remember who we are. Ronald Reagan’s optimism, commitment to freedom and sound fiscal leadership awoke the American people and inspired a new generation. Reagan’s autobiography helps me see the man, the values that shaped him and his drive to restore America as a shining city on a hill in a world that needed freedom and leadership.
What will be your top priority in elected to this position?
I will continue to work with partners in the criminal justice system with our focus on reducing instances of domestic violence and expanding services to victims of crime.
What is the biggest issue facing your county?
Providing access to justice and building trust and confidence in the court system are critical to leading a well-run clerk’s office. Bob Duckworth has done both throughout his 24 years as Clerk of the Court, and I too am committed to delivering the best possible service to our constituents. The Clerk of the Court serves a critical function in ensuring equal access to the courts and to assure the integrity and independence of the court. One example of need is ensuring services to victims of crime in general, and of particular concern is the level of domestic violence in Maryland and the need to ensure access to services such as protective orders. According to Uniform Crime Report there were 25,996 incidents of domestic violence assaults and 68 domestic violence homicides in Maryland in 2015. We must do more to serve victims of crime and reduce domestic violence in our communities.
What is your position on taxes and spending?
I believe in limited taxes and spending. We must remember that each dollar spent was earned by hard working people before it was taxed. Before any expenditure is authorized, we must balance the need with the reality that individuals and families across the county are paying for these expenditures and determine if the value is worthy of this cost. Taxes should only be used for our highest-priority needs.
What is your position on a county tax cap?
I voted for and support the county tax cap.
What is your position on land use issues?
We must protect property rights and balance the need for the common good as we determine zoning and land use issues within the county. There is constant tension with these objectives and that requires collaboration, transparency and input from the public as land use issues are decided.
What is your position on public safety?
Our law enforcement officials deserve the highest respect and honor as they work to protect our communities. Elected officials must work to ensure that there is integrity and build trust in our law enforcement community. I support a collaborative approach to bringing our religious, education, legal and law enforcement communities together to make our communities safer.