Collins savors victory

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 9, 2005

After all of the &#8220noise” of a long campaign, Ironton Municipal Court Judge Oakley Clark Collins silenced his challenger, attorney Kevin Waldo, by more than 1,400 votes.

Collins took 58 percent of the vote with 5,369 cast in his favor. Waldo finished the election with 3,951 votes.

&#8220I feel great, it was a good win,” Collins said. &#8220I'd like to thank all of my supporters in Lawrence County, it was terrific.”

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During a celebration at the Ironton Elks Club, Collins credited his record, which includes his high DUI conviction rate and the establishment of a community work program, for the win.

&#8220It's simply that we've done a good job for 24 years. I really believe that,” he said. &#8220I just have confidence in the public, I always felt that they would look at this race and say ‘If it's not broke, why fix it?'”

The race had been one of the most hotly contested in recent history with a advertising maelstrom beginning around nine months before the election was even held.

&#8220You can't go through this without a lot of people working hard and making sacrifices, and it wasn't just me. My supporters are just terrific,” Collins said. &#8220One person can't do this, it takes a lot to run a campaign. That was very rewarding, all the people that pitched in to help.”

One of those who &#8220pitched in” was Duke Sheridan, who said that he had personally contacted more than 1,600 people to spread the word about the judge.

&#8220He's been a friend of mine for 30 or 40 years, and I believed in the man.”