September 18, 2020

 As many of you may have heard by now our Kentucky County Judge/Executive Association Executive Director, Vince Lang, announced his upcoming retirement at our August Executive Board meeting. I think that I can say on behalf of all Judge Executives across Kentucky both past and present that we all are grateful for the service that Vince Lang has provided for KCJEA for almost 18 years. He has been a mentor, an educator, an outstanding leader, and a friend to us all during his tenure at KCJEA. He has brought and shared a wealth of knowledge, being a former Hart County Judge Executive and former employee of the Kentucky Department of Revenue, to us all through his service at KCJEA. Vince has been our front man and the face of KCJEA for a long time now. Thank You Once Again Vince Lang for your service to all Kentucky County Judge Executives and affiliate local government organizations.

 Upon receiving this news, I immediately appointed a search committee to help with the task of finding a new Executive Director for KCJEA. We advertised for the position as quickly as possible in order to find a desirable candidate to fill the position and to determine who would be interested in this most important position. Thank You to all who served on the search committee and who agreed to help in this capacity. Thank You to Vince in his advisory capacity. Thank You to Amy and Pam for helping collaborate all of the applications and resumes for the Search Committee and organizing everything for the search. 

 After receiving several applications and resumes from very qualified individuals, both Judge Executives and other professionals we conducted interviews and had our selection process on September 16th, 2020. I will have to say that we had some very outstanding candidates who all held great qualities for the position. The process was strenuous, but the Search Committee and Executive Board carefully evaluated the potential candidates and did everything possible to make sure the process was fair for all who wanted to be considered and yet make sure that we chose the right individual to lead the Kentucky County Judge/Executive Association in to the future. 

 Upon a completion of the interview and selection process including a vote by the Executive Board for KCJEA, Lewis County Judge Executive Todd Ruckel was chosen to fulfill the position of Executive Director of the Kentucky County Judge/Executive Association. Judge Ruckel began his service as a Lewis County Judge Executive in November 2012 and from that time Judge Ruckel has been a very active member and also a member of both the Executive & Legislative Committees of KCJEA. Judge Ruckel’s experience also includes being the former mayor of Vanceburg, KY for 2 years, as well as a Lewis County Magistrate for 4 years, a Financial Sales Manager for 18 years  and a host of many other experiences too numerous to mention at this time.  

 Judge Ruckel and his wife Sandy have been married for 26 years and have 3 boys together, Cameron, Brett and Adam. Their sons are all grown now. Judge Ruckel and his wife Sandy plan to relocate to Frankfort in the very near future to be on spot to fulfill his duties as Director of KCJEA. Judge Ruckel will begin his duties on December 1st, 2020. 

 Please join me in Welcoming, Lewis County Judge Executive Todd Ruckel as the Next and New Executive Director of the Kentucky County Judge/Executive Association. 

John A. Phelps Jr.
President, KCJEA 2020

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