Harrell files candidacy for reelection as clerk of court
Greg Harrell, the Marion County Clerk of Court and Comptroller, listens during the Historic Marion County Commission meeting held at the Fort King National Historic Landmark in Ocala, Fla. on Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2023. [Bruce Ackerman/Ocala Gazette] 2023.
Greg Harrell has filed his candidacy to run for reelection in 2024 for the office of clerk of court and comptroller.
Harrell, a Republican, was first elected to the office in 2020. If reelected, he will serve until 2028. To date, he is the only candidate in the race.
When asked why he decided to throw his hat in the ring for another term, Harrell said he truly enjoys the job and couldn’t imagine giving it up.
“I am absolutely loving the job. I love the team I get to work with and love the other constitutional officers and county commissioners and judges that my team and I get to work with,” he said.
While Harrell is only three years into his first term, he isn’t new to serving the public at the clerk of court’s office.
“I had the good fortune of serving as general counsel to my predecessor, David Ellspermann, inhis last two terms. So, I’ve been with the office almost 11 years now,” he said.
Harrell, a third-generation Marion County resident, earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia and earned his law degree from the University of Florida’s Levin College of Law.
Harrell points to multiple innovations made possible by him and his team since his election, including the implementation of the county’s very first Popular Annual Financial Report in 2022.
“The PAFR is more of user friendly, typically about a 10- to 15- or 20-page document, that gives citizens a snapshot of the county details,” he said. “We’ve never done that before and I’m just very proud of the fact that we were able to get that done.”
The PAFR is intended to be a simple, easy-to-understand summary of the county’s economic condition and activities and condenses the data from the Annual Comprehensive Financial Report to show residents how tax dollars are spent in Marion County, according to the clerk’s office.
Harrell said he also took pride in their new website, which was redone in recent months.
“We were able to use basically the results of some data analytics to know and understand why people come to our website, what they look at the most, what they use the most, and then repackaged the website to basically better work for the customers,” he said.
Harrell said another reason he’s vying for reelection is to continue representing Marion County on a state level. He currently serves as the treasurer of the Florida Court Clerks & Comptrollers, and last year served as the association’s secretary.
“If reelected as clerk locally, I will have the opportunity to also continue to serve at the state level and during my second term, eventually become the president of the statewide (FCCC), which I think is an important purpose of having our local voice heard.,” Harrell said.
Outside of his duties as an elected official, Harrell is also a husband and father. His wife, Stephanie, is a physician and the owner and operator of Pediatric Associates of Ocala. The pair have two children, a 15-year-old son and 13-year-old daughter, who both attend Marion County Public Schools.
If given the opportunity to serve as clerk of court again, Harrell said he sees a lot of potential with four more years in office.
“I know how it’s done,” he said. “I love the work, and just trying to look for ways to continuously do better for the people in Marion County.”