Don Brown wins

Catawba County Sheriff-Elect Don Brown hugs a supporter during his celebration party Tuesday night.

Our view: A new man will fill the role of Catawba County’s top law enforcement official on December 3 when Don Brown is sworn in as sheriff. We wish him well in what may be the county’s most challenging job.

Why we believe that: In the Republican primary in May, voters signaled the need for a change. It was easy to understand why. The sheriff’s office was caught up in an SBI investigation of a former employee that remains unresolved. And the office was also, at times, in conflict with the district attorney.

Something had to give.

New sheriff Brown stressed improving public trust in the office during his campaign. In an interview, he said, “You do that through operating ethically and honestly, and through transparency.”

He also said honesty, character and family are the pillars of his life. And that he would stress professionalism and collaboration in office.

That’s about as much as you can ask for from the top law enforcement official. It is also what we should expect from a sheriff, especially transparency, honesty and strong ethics.

Those core values will be essential as Brown works to reshape the sheriff’s office and get all our law officers on the same page.

In conclusion: We have found Brown to be open and cordial as he prepares for the task ahead. On Monday, there will be a new sheriff in town. His opportunity is great, so are the challenges.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect Brown's swearing-in is set for Dec. 3.

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