By MIKE WEST, Courier Editor
Training is well underway for Matt Teply in his new job as Cannon County's Administrator of Elections (AOE).
"I've jumped into the job here and I'm picking up skills faster than I thought," Teply said Thursday (April 16). "I'm very excited to serve."
Teply assumed the job following a vote by the Election Commission last Monday (April 13). So far, much of his time has involved meeting with people and learning more about his new post from AOE Wayne Pruitt and others. His goal is to gain state certification.
Assisting him as Assistant AOE is Sandy Alexander, daughter of late Cannon County Commissioner Joe Wimberly.
Teply has lived in Cannon County for nearly 12 years. He taught mathematics in the Rutherford County Schools for 15 years until accepting his new job.
Active in politics, Teply was an unsuccessful candidate for Cannon County Clerk in the November 2014 general election running a tough campaign against long-time office holder Bobby Smith.
His wife, Melissa, taught Advanced Placement Biology and Biology at Smyrna High before they began a family. She manages their home and is very active with the Friends of the Library at Adams Memorial Library and with the Governor's Imagination Library program.
The Teplys moved to Cannon County after a long search to find the perfect place to raise their children, Saul and Olivia.
"Next up is improving efforts to boost voter participation," Teply said. "We will be attending events like Good Ole Days and Red Apple Days with voter information including sign-up sheets."
While there is a break before the next election, Teply intends to update the Election Commission's website (http://www.cannoncountyelections.com/) and make it more user friendly.
The site should provide profiles of the various offices and eventually could include basic information about candidates for each post, he said.
Eliminating confusion over election districts is another goal.
"I want to clarify where people are supposed to vote," he said. Instead of just offering a map, the web site should specify streets and addresses in each district.