Whitley not seeking re-election as clerk of court

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After more than a decade serving as Wilson County’s clerk of superior court, Andrew Whitley will not seek re-election.

His announcement came Monday, the first day of the filing period for candidates running in the 2018 elections.

“I have been humbled with the honor of serving the citizens of Wilson County as your clerk of superior court for the past 12 years,” Whitley said in a statement.

Whitley, an attorney who has held the position since 2005, said an exciting opportunity was recently extended to him to return to practicing law.

“I believe that this opportunity will provide me with a unique chance to serve even more people in the Wilson area,” Whitley said. “I discussed this opportunity with my wife and family and after weighing our options, we decided that now was the best time for me to return to private practice.”

Whitley said while serving as clerk, he created one of the most respected and efficient offices in the state.

“The foundation for this office’s success lies in the outstanding staff that we have assembled,” he said. “It is made up of knowledgeable veterans and innovative individuals who are committed to serving the public. I am personally indebted to these outstanding women and men.”

Whitley said the clerk’s office is vital to the community.

“The office sits at the center of the judicial system and is responsible for assisting the public with their court-related matters, maintaining all court filings and collecting monies on behalf of the court system,” he said. “The clerk of superior court not only addresses administrative matters but is also a judge.”

He said the clerk hears complex and personal matters — wills, estates, guardianships, land divisions, adoptions and questions of competency.

“My experiences both personally and professionally as serving as your clerk will be memories that I will cherish for the rest of my life,” he said. “I deeply appreciate the confidence that the citizens of Wilson County have placed in me during my tenure and for this I will be forever grateful.”


On Monday, Assistant District Attorney Caroline Quinn filed to run for clerk of superior court position. Quinn, a Democrat, has been a prosecutor for more than 13 years.

“As many of you know, the clerk of court primarily assists and supports the public in its access to an efficient court system,” Quinn said. “The clerk also acts as a judicial official in estates and special proceedings. It is my desire to keep Wilson County at the top in efficiency and service to the people. I have always tried to serve my fellow man and hope to continue to do so in this position.”

She said she has extensive experience in prosecuting juvenile and various district court cases.

Quinn, a Hunt High School graduate, holds an undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a law degree from Campbell University. Prior to her role in the district attorney’s office, Quinn worked for her family’s law firm, Farris & Farris. She said this gave her the expertise to handle diverse civil matters as well as criminal matters, which is a necessity for the clerk position.

She married Joe Quinn in 1995 following his graduation from Campbell’s Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law and began work as an assistant district attorney in Wilson. Together, they have two children — Sam, a sophomore at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and Lillie, a junior at Fike High School.

In 2006, Quinn’s husband died from lung cancer.

Quinn has served on a variety of community boards and commissions including Hope Station and St. John’s Migrant Head Start. She’s volunteered for Save-A-Youth, is past president of Imagination Station and serves on the Wilson County Juvenile Crime Prevention Council. She is currently a coach for Girls on the Run — a national running program in Wilson for girls in grades 3-8 that aims to build self-confidence and healthy living. lar filing period began at noon Monday, ending at noon on Feb. 28 for candidates running for most elected offices across North Carolina in 2018.