Drew County Circuit Clerk Beverly Burks has announced that she will seek re-election to the position in this year’s Democratic primary on May 22.
Burks, 51, is currently serving her second term in office.
“Serving as circuit clerk is both challenging and rewarding,” Burks said. “Most of the interactions people have with our office involve a court case of some kind – criminal charges, juvenile issues, a divorce or domestic abuse matter, a civil suit, or even jury duty – and emotions can run high. My staff and I make every effort to clearly explain how the various processes work so that people, many of whom do not have previous experience with the justice system and can become frustrated with it, can understand what is happening and what the next steps in their cases will be.
“If people are informed and feel as though they have the opportunity to be heard in a legal matter, it can make the process less stressful or intimidating, and we try to keep that in mind when interacting with them,” she explained. “Of course, it’s rewarding to see justice done or a bad situation alleviated, and I’m always glad when that happens.”
Late last year, Burks obtained authorization from the quorum court to replace the outdated software in her office, which will greatly improve the land records system and streamline the case-management and monthly reporting processes. “This will be an advantage to not only the law firms, title companies and banks who record various documents with us, but to individuals as well,” she said.
“The circuit clerk’s office is responsible for keeping track of everything that is filed in all felony criminal, civil, domestic relations and juvenile cases, along with recording deeds, mortgages, liens and other property-related orders and instruments,” Burks explained. “We also are responsible for facilitating a large number of child support payments and summoning juries. Dozens of documents come through our office every day and my deputies and I must ensure that they are properly processed and stored to maintain the integrity of each file. We have developed good working relationships with attorneys, judges and their staffs, the prosecuting attorney’s office, public defenders and law enforcement agencies. It’s a big job, and we work hard everyday to do what we can to make the justice system work as smoothly as possible, at least as far as our office is concerned.”
Burks, who lives in Wilmar, is a graduate of Monticello High School and Rhodes College in Memphis, Tenn. She assists with her family’s cattle operation and serves as church secretary and Sunday school superintendent at Wilmar United Methodist Church. She is secretary of the Wilmar Cemetery Association, a life member of the Junior Auxiliary of Monticello, and a member of the Seark Concert Association board. She is a member of the Monticello Book Group and Monticello Women’s Investment Club. She is the daughter of Shirley Burks of Wilmar and the late James Burks.
“I appreciate the trust the voters have placed in me in my first two terms, and sincerely ask for their support again this year,” Burks said.