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|Dean's mark in Franklin|
After serving some 36 years on the job, J.W. Dean retired this week as assessor in Franklin Parish.
He will be missed.
Dean will be missed because he hails from an era in Louisiana politics in which many elected officials simply carried out their official duties void of much controversy while maintaining a high level of integrity. That's exactly what Dean did during his almost four decades on the job as Franklin Parish's assessor.
In every aspect of his life, Dean has treated people with respect, and he never viewed the public office he held as his own. Dean obviously knew it was a privilege to serve in an elected capacity, a trait too many elected officials fail to realize today.
It was not surprising to us either that Dean served as long as he did in a parish where voters—historically speaking—do not put up with many shenanigans among elected officials. Voters trusted Dean, but Dean gave them every reason to do so. He's an honest man.
To surmise, Dean represents the gold standard as an elected official, a husband, a father and a grandfather. He set the bar high.
Though we regret to see Dean leave public service, we feel certain his successor, Rod Elrod, will do an excellent job in operating the assessor's office in a manner that would make Dean proud. After all, for the past year Elrod has trained under Dean's watch. We suspect Dean trained him well.
Elrod is a good man, too, in his own right, and he demonstrated to us long ago that he recognizes serving the people is honor and privilege, not just another job.