I spent some time with Sheriff Chuck Phillips earlier this week. He was battling a cold, but graciously stayed and answered every question I had.

That’s nothing new, though. I would have been surprised if he had not.  In the history of sheriffs in Jackson County, only two, Bob Collins and Mike Wells, have served four terms.  Paul Mount served three terms. And now, Phillips, who will begin his third term in January, joins that group.

I came to work at The Sentinel in September 2007, a little over a year after the 2006 election. I wasn’t here when half of the sheriff’s office ran to replace Wells as sheriff after his retirement.

In the end, Dennis Miller defeated Phillips in a run-off.  The best thing, though, is after the election, Phillips and Miller went back to work.

Miller didn’t get rid of Phillips, and Phillips didn’t quit. That says a lot about both men. Later, Miller promoted Phillips to chief deputy, setting up another shot at sheriff in 2010.

Since that time, Phillips has easily been elected three times.  In many cases, a sheriff doesn’t see more than two terms in office. That’s just the way it seems to go. A sheriff makes someone mad.

Unlike a judge or district attorney, a sheriff faces any and every one come election time. Anyone can run for sheriff.

Jackson County has a good sheriff. But Jackson County already knows that.

Phillips isn’t the man of the hour, who stops a room when steps in the door. He’s not full of drama, or controversy. 

About the most dramatic or controversial thing he’s done is switch political parties, from Democrat to Republican. The truth there is he shouldn’t have had to switch parties simply because he shouldn’t have to select a party. But that’s another matter for another time.

It’s hard to imagine many people getting 82 percent of the vote in a general election. It’s also very rare that a sheriff runs unopposed as Phillips did in 2014.

Jackson County has a good man as its sheriff. Since, 2010, though, Jackson County already knows that.

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