Springdale City Attorney Moves to New Role After 26 Years
New Year’s Eve was moving day for the Springdale city attorney after 26 years on the job. Jeff Harper is moving down the hall to become district judge.
“I’ve been in this position since I was 31,” Harper said. “It’s hard for me to imagine going to another job but at the same time, I’m excited about the new challenge.”
Harper holds a black and white of picture from when he became a police officer. Harper said he loves his native town and this will be an emotional transition.
“I’ve still got my kid’s baby pictures and now they are 23 and 18-years-old,” Harper said.
Harper’s pictures, decades old files and desk move with him but the memories remain.
“The best part of the job is working with the people that I’ve been able to work with,” Harper said. “I’ve worked for three mayors, seven police chiefs, six fire chiefs and 34 council members.”
When he started, the city attorney job was a part-time position. Harper has been with the city throughout the changes.
“It’s a lot more diverse town and a lot bigger town and the job is a lot different than it was 26 years ago,” Harper said.
His administrative legal assistant Cindy Horlick has been with him since he took office in 1986.
“I feel like he’s family to me,” Horlick said. “I’m sorry, I’m tearing up now, it’s kind of emotional.”
Horlick will remain in the city attorney’s office but said she’ll always remember working for Harper.
“There’s an echo through the building ‘Cindy,” they know that he’s coming,” Horlick said. “He’s needing somebody to find his pen or his glasses or something.”
Harper’s life will change with the start of 2013.
“I think I would have a lot more tears if I were moving away somewhere and not coming down here. I’ll still see my old staff all the time,” Harper said.
Harper said he has many ideas and goals. He plans to meet with his staff to discuss projects.
Harper will be replaced by Ernest Cate.
Harper will be sworn in as the new district judge by Washington County Judge William Storey Tuesday Jan. 1 at 1p.m.