For the last 18 years every detail of Wheeling city government, from the obscurest of ordinances to minutes of the most hotly debated meetings, has crossed the desk of City Clerk Janice Jones.
So if you have a question, you probably need look no further than her office - and, chances are, if she doesn't know the answer it won't take her very long to find it. The West Virginia Municipal League recognized that fact when it named Jones the West Virginia Clerk/Recorder of the Year, making her the only person to earn that honor twice.
Jones received the award from a committee of her peers during the Municipal League's annual summer conference, held earlier this month at Snowshoe Resort in Elkins, W.Va., 12 years after she was honored with the same award in 2000.
Wheeling officials recognized the achievement during last week's City Council meeting with a hearty round of applause. City Manager Robert Herron noted Jones' professionalism and said she's the best clerk he's worked with in his career in city administration.
Jones said what she likes best about her work is the constant interaction with the community and that there's never a shortage of things to do.
"I like to keep busy, and it's a busy job," she said.
A city employee since 1985, Jones was appointed to her current post in 1994. She is a past president of the West Virginia Clerk and Recorders Association and has been on the Municipal League's board of directors since 2000. She has also served on the League's Conference Planning Committee and Credentials Committee for the past 20 years.
In 2000, Jones earned her Certified Municipal Clerk Certification from the International Institute of Municipal Clerks - one of only nine clerks in the state to do so - and she is nearing completion of her Master Municipal Clerk certification.
The West Virginia Municipal League is a statewide, nonprofit, nonpartisan association of cities, towns and villages established in 1968 to assist local governments and advance the interests of the citizens who reside within. The League achieves this directive through legislative advocacy, research, education and other services for municipal elected officials.