Montalvo honored at retirement reception at courthouse
Linda Montalvo made local history recently when she became the first woman to become Saline County clerk.
Montalvo's term in office has been a short one, however, as she will be retiring from county employment at the close of the month.
She was honored Friday at a reception held in the upstairs courtroom at the Saline County Courthouse.
Attending the event were several hundred people, including local county and state officials.
Montalvo was appointed to the clerk's office by the Saline County Quorum Court after the former clerk, Freddy Burton, retired for health reasons.
Doug Curtis, who won the Republican Party nomination in May and faced no Democratic opponent Nov. 6, will assume the office Jan. 1.
Montalvo had served as election coordinator for 10 years.
At the time she received the appointment as clerk, Montalvo said she was looking forward to her stint, even though the term would be short.
"It's nice to know I'll be the first female county clerk," she said. "I'll also be serving the shortest term, but right now I'm the county employee with the longest time in one office."
She has been employed at the clerk's office since 1981.
She was hired by then-county clerk George Ramsey, who was among those attending her retirement reception.
Darlene Ramsey, who has been an employee of the clerk's office for 20 years, is now serving as election coordinator.
Montalvo has said she plans to spend her retirement time focusing on her two grandchildren and her three dachshunds.
"And I'm looking forward to sleeping in," she said.
"I love being able to take lunch to my granddaughters and I plan to be more available to them," she added.
The granddaughters are Jaci, 15, and Lexi, 13, who attend Harmony Grove High School.
During the retirement reception, a representative of Secretary of State Mark Martin's office presented Montalvo with a proclamation recognizing her years of service to Saline County residents.
As she looks toward retirement, Montalvo said, "I'll stay busy, but I know it will take some adjustment since I've worked all my life."
She said she started working the summer between her eighth and ninth grades at the Highway 67 Market. "I was still working there even after I had my children.
"I'll be forever grateful for all the years I've worked here in the clerk's office," Montalvo said.
Elections are exciting times, Montalvo said.
"It's great to see people register to vote and to know that they want to vote," she said.
She noted that "early voting is one of the best things that has happened in the election process."
"We're known for having good elections here, and that's what we want," Montalvo said. "Basically, we've been doing the same thing for years.
"This is the best staff anywhere," she said. "Doug is getting a great group of employees here."
Montalvo also commended the county's pollworkers. "We have excellent pollworkers throughout the county. They're serious about what they do and are dedicated to the job. We appreciate all of them."
She expressed appreciation to Ramsey for hiring her and then to Burton for giving her professional opportunities she said she never dreamed would come her way.