Crawford County clerk announces retirement

Jonathan Riley
Morning Sun
Don Pyle

PITTSBURG, Kan. — After more than a decade and a half with the county government, Crawford County Clerk Don Pyle announced Tuesday that he will retire at the end of the year. 

“It’s been interesting, nothing that 20 years ago I would've ever thought I’d be involved in,” Pyle said at Tuesday’s county commission meeting.  

“I mean I worked in the private sector and enjoyed it and had some good, you know, opportunities and positions there, and then when we decided to move back down here this kind of opened up and it was a good opportunity and something I’ve really enjoyed, because this is a great county,” he said. 

Pyle was already middle-aged, he said, when he started working for the county government in early 2005. A little over two years later, he became county clerk in August 2007. 

“After last year, the challenges, and a very hectic general election to manage, I just feel it’s best that somebody with more energy take care of that,” Pyle said.  

“I had been mulling this over for a few months, and I think it’s best for everybody involved,” he added. 

Commissioner Tom Moody thanked Pyle on behalf of the commission for his service to the county, saying will be missed. 

“I hate to see you leave us, but I understand,” Moody said, “and one thing you can count on: it’s a better place now than it was when you started, and for that I thank you, and I know the commission thanks you for that.” 

In announcing his retirement, Pyle also commended county officials for their ability to work together, which he said is not always the case in other counties across the state. 

“I mean when you talk to clerks, treasurers, commissioners from other parts of the state, as I have for many years at conferences and things, there’s just a — I don’t know, it’s a feeling, but people here work together when they need to,” he said. “Not always, they may not always agree, but when they need to get stuff done, they get things done.” 

Commissioner Jeremy Johnson similarly said that Crawford County officials’ ability to cooperate with each other is not something to be taken for granted. 

“I don’t know how many counties I’ve heard from at conferences where the treasurer won’t speak to the clerk, or the sheriff hates everybody, or the commissioners are fighting with whoever,” Johnson said. 

Pyle said he could not have continued working for the county for so many years if officials here were anywhere close to as bad at working together as they are in other parts of the state. 

“I just shake my head in disbelief because I can’t imagine working in that kind of environment, and there’s great people that work here, and it will continue without me,” Pyle said. He added, however, that he is not gone just yet. 

“It’s 6 months down the road before I, you know, take my personal stuff off the wall in there,” he said.