Jamestown native and North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Paul Newby dropped in on the 6 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 19 Jamestown Council meeting to install new council members – as well as some members that didn’t even need to be installed.
Newby administered the oath to the mayor and all four council members. Everyone was so excited about Newby’s presence that some members who didn’t need to get sworn in chose to get sworn in again anyway – which is sort of like couples renewing their wedding vows even though the first ones are still in effect.
The mayor and two council members are in the middle of four-year staggered terms. However, they took the oaths along with the two newly elected members even though it wasn’t necessary.
At the swearing in ceremony, Chief Justice Newby talked warmly about growing up in Jamestown. He began with a story about his parents buying a house in Jamestown in 1958. Their real estate agent was Bow Stafford – the late father of current Council Member Martha Stafford Wolfe.
Newby also gave a short lesson on how municipalities are created by the state legislature as well as some history on how that came to be. He also spoke on, among other topics, the importance of swearing-in ceremonies,.
Newby was accompanied by his older brother – Parks Newby – who also lives in Raleigh. The wives of both men were also in attendance.
Other prominent people from the southwestern corner of Guilford County were in attendance as well. For instance, Loren Hill, the area’s longtime economic development guru, attended the meeting as a past Town Council member.
“Paul and I were at Ragsdale High School at the same time,” Hill told the Rhino Times after the meeting, “though I am a year or two older.”
It’s not the first time Newby has sworn-in local officials, but it is his first time swearing them in as a chief justice on the NC Supreme Court.
Several years ago – as an associate justice – Newby swore-in some new High Point City Council members.