SANDPOINT — It was standing room only in the meeting room at the Bonner County Administration Building Monday as Jeff Connolly and Dan McDonald were sworn in as the county's newest commissioners.
About 75 people, many of them family members of those being sworn in, attended the ceremony.
Connolly, a lifelong Bonner County resident who served on the Priest River City Council for 15 years, was the first to be sworn in by Judge Barbara Buchanan. Connolly said he is anxious to begin his run as a county commissioner and is "humbled" by the opportunity to serve as county commissioner.
"There is a lot of work to be done and I am here to get started and I'm excited to get started," Connolly said.
With his family joining him at the podium, McDonald was next in line to take the oath. Being elected as county commissioner is McDonald's first run as a politician, but during his campaign said his experience in running large businesses gives him the experience and knowledge to be a commissioner. McDonald said he spent the last few months with the commissioners to "learn the ropes."
"They have been more than happy to keep me abreast of what's going on, to talk to me about things that have happened in the past and things that are coming up in the future, and I am obviously quite humbled by all the support I got from the community," McDonald said.
During the ceremony, the commissioner commenced the first order of business by appointing returning commissioner Glen Bailey as chairman of the board of commissioners.
Bonner County Sheriff Daryl Wheeler and Prosecutor Louis Marshall, both incumbents, were sworn into their respective offices during the ceremony as well.
The ceremony also served as a farewell to outgoing commissioners Cary Kelly and Todd Sudick, as wells as a farewell to Kathryn "Kit" Rose, whose resignation from Bonner County Coroner goes into effect this month.
Rose, announcing that she is "not a very good speech giver," kept it short when she spoke to the crowd and her county co-workers.
"I did the job, I enjoyed the job — It's been an honor being able to help the people in the county and thanks for having me," she said, as the crowd awarded her with a thunderous applause.
Marshall used the time following his own swearing in to address Rose and her service to the county.
"She has done a tremendous job," he said, adding that Rose was housed out of his office. "Her council, to me, has been invaluable for the last 14 years, so I am very sad to see her go and I want to make sure and thank her."