HOPE – When the Haw Creek Township trustee died in August after serving 32 years in office, his widow didn’t want an inexperienced person attempting to complete his final two years in office.
“What I wanted to do was to finish up his term, and do it to the best of my ability,” said Debbie Hatton, who has worked 23 years for the town of Hope and is best known as the community’s utility clerk.
That’s how Hatton, 68, was selected in a recent GOP caucus to succeed her late husband, Ron Hatton, and fulfill the remainder of his term, which concludes in 2022.
The new job is familiar territory for Hatton. She has worked with her husband at the trustee’s office on-and-off since he was first elected to the position in the late 1980s.
While Ron Hatton was suffering from ill health for a year before his death, Debbie Hatton said she stepped in to take care of the people, leaving her husband to do what she described as “behind-the-scene stuff” from home.
When asked if she’s concerned about taking on this job while many in her township are out of work and seeking help, Hatton said the time commitment hasn’t been too demanding – so far.
Although she is required to meet a Haw Creek Township resident in person who is requesting assistance for the first time, Hatton said she tries to handle all other business over the telephone due to COVID-19 concerns.
For more on this story, see Friday’s Republic.