Seven members, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said they consider Captain Jeff Carlisle the obvious frontrunner to take over when current sheriff Andy Hughes leaves next month. Hughes has accepted a job as Assistant Alabama Homeland Security Director.
However, the chairman of the committee said there has been no decision made and he’s urging everyone interested in the job to apply. “I have no inkling whatsoever that the fix is in or there’s a plan or a deal,” John Gormley said. “In fact I had a committee member email me (Thursday) adamant that he gets to study these candidates.”
State Representative Paul Lee, a member of the committee, said he thinks everyone has a fair shot. “All options are open and we’ll follow the process and the law to make sure that the Republican Party will be represented on the ballot in November,” Lee said.
Hughes departure comes less than three months before he would have appeared on the ballot unopposed in the November general election. No Democrat qualified for the primary so the person selected by the committee will become sheriff when a new term begins in January. The only exception would be in the highly unlikely event a candidate mounts a successful write-in campaign.
When Hughes departs August 17 an interim sheriff will be appointed. However, Gormley hopes the person selected as the Republican nominee will also be named to the interim job. “We’re going to ask to governor if he would consider making his interim appointment after the 28th,” he said.
Gormley said as of midday Thursday he’s received correspondence from about 20 people interested in the job though not all will likely apply. Carlisle told DothanFirst he plans to seek the job. Fellow officer Lt. Randy Anderson said Wednesday he wants to be considered. Gormley said a list of those who apply will be made public July 24.
He said resumes can be emailed to him at firstname.lastname@example.org. He will also accept phone calls from interest applicants at 333-5646.