Cherry Warren honored at courthouse reception
Barry County presiding commissioner in last stretch of 24 years of service
After 24 years, Barry County Presiding Commissioner Cherry Warren’s time at his post is coming to a close, and a reception was held in his honor Thursday recognizing him for the six terms of service.
Warren received a plaque from Barry County officials, as well as resolutions from the Missouri House and Missouri Senate. About 75 people attended the event at the Barry County Courthouse.
“I learned a long time ago if you’re being heaped with praise, you should keep your feet on the ground,” Warren said after the presentations. “I got into county government because I wanted to make improvements and they needed help. And, through all these years, I’ve never had a commission that didn’t work well together. I always said if I had to come fuss and fight, there were other things I could be doing.”
Warren is a lifelong Barry County resident who still operates a farm near Exeter. He spent time in the banking industry before his first election to presiding commissioner in 1994.
“I’ve worked in Cassville basically all my life,” he said. “I love Barry County and I love its people. And I’m not going anywhere. If anyone needs anything, I’ll be here.”
During his time, Warren served on the Highway 37-60 Corridor Coalition representing five counties, advocating for improvements with passing lanes. He was also one of 10 Republican electors who cast Electoral College votes for Donald Trump and Mike Pence in the 2016 presidential election.
Since he began his 24 years, things have also changed locally.
“When I started, deputies drove their own vehicles,” he said. “And on my first day here, it was 12 degrees outside and the prosecuting attorney’s office had their windows open. I asked why and they said the couldn’t control the heat and broiler and they had to open the windows to cool the room down. So, one of the first things I did was replace the windows at the courthouse and install ground-source heat and air.”
Warren said not every project was a winner, but he always did the best he could for the county.
“We made our share of mistakes, but no one has ever accused me of not standing up for Barry County,” he said.
Warren will make way for incoming Presiding Commissioner Gary Youngblood, who has been county clerk since 1994 and won the August Republican Primary Election for presiding commissioner.