Sedgwick County held an oath of office ceremony on Sunday for two commissioners who are beginning their new terms.
Commissioner David Dennis is serving a second term representing the 3rd District. Sarah Lopez begins a new career in public service representing the 2nd District.
Lopez left her job as a regional manager for health care technology at Ascension Via Christi last week. Lopez, a Democrat, won a close race over Republican incumbent Michael O’Donnell in the November election.
“I have been working towards this, my team and I, for well over a year at this point,” Lopez said in an interview. “So for the moment to finally be here, it’s surreal. I’m excited, I’m nervous.”
To prepare for her new role with the county, she spent the past month touring county facilities and meeting with staff in various departments.
“There’s a lot that I have to learn,” Lopez said.
Lopez has already put in a request to establish a Citizens Advisory Board for the 2nd District. Once approved, applications will be available on the county website. She says she hopes to have the first meeting by April.
Dennis and 4th District Commissioner Lacey Cruse both have their own boards.
The county commission is a five-member elected board that controls the finances of the county and serves as the board of health, among other duties.