When Jane Kelley leaves office on Monday it will cap the end of a more than 20 year career serving the people of Pettis County.
Kelley, first elected Pettis County Treasurer as a Democrat in 2000, announced earlier this year that she would not be seeking another term in office. In November, Pettis County voters elected Kim Lyne, a Republican, as her replacement.
“I am not quitting because I don’t like the job,” Kelley told the Democrat on Thursday. “I will miss the people and the job, but this isn’t the kind of job you can just retire from when you want to and if I had been reelected it would have locked me in for four more years. I will definitely miss the job and the people, but it was just time.”
A Pettis County native, Kelley worked for Town and Country Shoe Company for 23 years until the factory closed, then took advantage of worker retraining opportunities and took a year to go to school.
While there she took a part-time position with the Pettis County Recorder of Deeds office, where she worked for nine months. When the then-secretary of the Pettis County Road and Bridge Department announced she was leaving her post, Kelley sought and received that position, helping oversee the office until her run for Pettis County Treasurer.
“I have always enjoyed working for the people,” Kelley said.
Kelley, who has met with Lyne over the last few weeks as the two prepare for the transition, said she had some simple advice for her replacement.
“Keep lots of paperwork. You simply can’t keep too many receipts,” Kelley said.
With less than a week until her term expires, Kelley said she is looking forward to the chance to travel and spend time with family, but is also excited to have the time for more mundane tasks.
“It will be nice in the summer not to have to plan weeks ahead to have time to mow the grass,” she said.
Pettis County Presiding Commissioner John Meehan credited Kelley for her dedication to the public.
“Jane is a great gal. She has been committed and dedicated to her position with the county and has been a great public servant,” Meehan said.
A public retirement party for Kelley, retiring commissioners Rod Lindemann and Larry Wilson, and departing Pettis County Assessor Dean Dohrman will be held at the courthouse from 4 to 6 p.m. today in the third floor courtroom.