Voter registrar to retire

Published 10:48 am Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Southampton County Voter Registrar Leona Davis will retire Friday after 26 years with the office. Assistant Registrar Peggy Davis will finish out her term.

COURTLAND—On Election Day, retiring Southampton County Sheriff Vernie Francis hugged Voter Registrar Leona Davis and told her this year would be their last trip together.

Shortly after, Davis decided to retire after 26 years of service in the office.

“I decided to retire kind of at the spur of the moment,” the 77-year-old said. “I awoke one morning and said, ‘This is it.’”

Assistant Registrar Peggy Davis, who is no relation to Leona Davis, will take over her boss’ remaining 3½ years in office. The job pays $47,175 annually.

“It’s big shoes to fill,” Peggy Davis said. “I’ve worked with her for 10 years. We work well together and we’ve had a wonderful relationship.”

Leona Davis and her husband, former Courtland Mayor Lewis Davis, plan on traveling and spending more time with their four grandchildren. She said being retired would feel strange at first.

“I’ve been in this so long,” the Capron native said. “It’ll be like a different life.”

Leona Davis began working for the Voter Registrar’s office in 1985 and took over as the county’s voter registrar in 1994 upon the death of June Barksdale.

Friday, Dec. 30, will be Leona Davis’ last day in office and Peggy Davis will start on Tuesday, Jan. 2.