Incumbent Diane Deal seeks to bring new technology to office


Incumbent Diane Deal at work as Clerk of Court. Deal hopes to keep her seat after the elections next month.

Emily Broyles, Reporter

Passionate about bettering the lives of others and keeping her home close to heart, Diane Deal, Democrat, is running for reelection for Clerk of Superior Court.

“I love my county. I love the people that I work with everyday,” Deal said. “I enjoy the interaction with the public, with all the attornies, the judges, my staff, but mostly with the people that come into my office.”

Deal has worked in the Clerk’s office for 30 years. Born west of the county, Deal said she values family and hometown traditions. She makes sure to spread her App State pride wherever she walks, especially in the office.

“My staff came to me and said, ‘We don’t have any court tomorrow, can we wear blue jeans and our App State shirts?’ and I said, ‘Sure you can!’” Deal said. “We needed a dress down day, and I said, ‘I’m gonna wear my App State T-shirt!’”

Deal said she has had many interns from App State, mostly criminal justice majors, that have benefited from the program. They learned about numerous duties the Clerk of Court is responsible for, including hearings and record-keeping.

Deal said she is thankful not only for the fun she has in her office, but for the voice she has to solve inconveniences of the government and people of Watauga by communicating with others.

“The clerks across the state of North Carolina are working diligently to put in place some technology where we will be able to take electronic filings,” Deal said. “There will be a much more updated, automatic system for our civil and criminal estates.”

Deal said she hopes to bring this technology to her office and to assist the public with the tool. She said the change will take a couple of years and wants to be in office when it happens.

Judy Jones, a former co-worker of Deal’s for 24 years, said she believes Deal has done an exceptional job as clerk and brings her confidence to the office.

“She has a basis there,” Jones said. “She’s extremely reliable, her work is of great value. She’s a person you can always count on.”

Charles Clement, a lawyer in Boone since 1972, has known Deal for almost 20 years. Clement said Deal’s knowledge and preparation of law maintains part of the traditional system the Watauga government already has.

Besides serving the county as clerk, Deal operates a Christmas tree farm she started 30 years ago and is married with a daughter and grandchildren.

Deal is running against Travis Critcher, Republican, for Clerk of Superior Court.

Story by Emily Broyles

Photo courtesy Diane Deal 

Featured photo caption: Incumbent Diane Deal at work as Clerk of Court. Deal hopes to keep her seat after the elections next month.