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Conner to retire as Clerk of Court at end of year

South Boston News
Bobby Conner / November 25, 2013
Halifax County Circuit Court Clerk Robert W. “Bobby” Conner announced Friday that he will be stepping down from his position at the end of the year.

“The time has come to move on. I am retiring as Clerk of the Halifax County Circuit Court effective Dec. 31, 2013,” wrote Conner in a statement to the media released Friday.

Conner, first appointed as clerk of court in 1988, will relinquish his duties to the office’s Chief Deputy, Cathy Cosby. She will take over as Interim Clerk of Court until a special election can be held to fill the position. A special election is likely to take place in November 2014.

In the statement announcing his retirement, Conner struck a wistful tone, recalling the circumstances under which he first took office.

“The headlines in an adjoining county newspaper in 1988 stated, ‘What will happen next in Halifax County? They just appointed a farmer to be the next Circuit Court Clerk.’ The local legal community was in a state of shock as well.

“But thanks to Judge Charles L. McCormick III, who appointed me to a vacant position and to a great staff, my transformation into an acceptable clerk was under way. Acceptable enough that I have been privileged to run unopposed for these last 25 years.

“Running unopposed, as an elected official is a gift most politicians only dream of. Thank you. Thank you.” — a remark he directed at county voters who returned him to office for numerous terms.

As for what comes next, Conner said at his age and stage of health, he wants to spend more time with his wife and family on their Nathalie family farms. “My two sons and six grandchildren are the fifth generation to live and work on these farms, and I want to spend my remaining years there working on my shop projects (that’s my little piece of heaven).”

Conner said he has enjoyed working with about 30 different Circuit Court judges who presided in Halifax, five elected sheriffs and countless attorneys.

“The experiences I treasure most are helping the people of Halifax County with their courthouse business and trying to explain the complexity of the legal system,” he stated.

Conner expressed confidence that the Courthouse staff, led by Cosby, will continue to provide all the necessary assistance that residents may need.

Conner said he plans to stay involved in county activities. He is one of the founders of the annual Heritage Festival, which highlights Halifax County’s farming history through displays of the equipment used in the production of tobacco and other crops. He has been not only a leader of the festival, but also an annual participant — an exhibitor among thousands who attend each spring.

Conner also recently retired as chairman of Mecklenburg Electric Cooperative and held numerous other positions on its Board of Directors for a number of years.

Since Conner’s appointment in 1988, the procedure for filling vacant Clerk positions has changed, with judges no longer asked to choose a successor.

Instead, an interim Clerk is appointed, followed by a special election to chose a person to serve out the rest of the unexpired term.

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A true gentleman! SOmething rare these days in politics. You will ber missed.


Judge McCormick mad a great choice with Bobby as clerk. Halifax will be hard pressed to find anyone to compare to Bobby Conner. We were very lucky to have him as our clerk for as long as we did. He helped more people than any politician in Halifax history. Good luck friend.

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