Mississippi County Judge will not seek 9th term.

By Keith Boles - bio | email feedback

BLYTHEVILLE, AR (KAIT)-When he steps down next year, Mississippi County Judge Steve McGuire will have served 8 terms.

Seven of those he ran unopposed.

I recently sat down with Judge McGuire to discuss his career and what he feels are his greatest accomplishments.

Judge Steve McGuire says that you know he's accomplished a lot of the past 16 years but now he thinks it's time to do something personal.

"Having spent a lifetime being very very busy. I've not spent as much time with my family as I probably should have and certainly not as much as I want to."

He mainly wants to spend a lot more time with his grandson who will be a senior in high school when McGuire finishes his term.

I have run into Judge McGuire in a variety of places but never without his red, white and blue tie.

And just like the American flag, it shows unity, which he says was sometimes tough in Mississippi county which still has 2 imposing county courthouses.

McGuire, "When I was a kid coming up, there was North Mississippi County, South Mississippi County and West of Big Lake. That was one of my goals in coming to this office was to unite this county into one county."

His efforts must have paid off. The county was able to pass a sales tax to make a pool of money that could be used to attract and assist new businesses to the area. Under the county economic incentive umbrella lots of good paying jobs have come to the county.

McGuire, "Aviation Repair Technology, Steel related industries, power plants, Denzo."

Judge McGuire says three factors about Mississippi county attract industry,the biggest factor, the people.

"Our infrastructure, our geographic location and quite honestly the quality of our workforce."

Another goal accomplished is the county assuming control with a management company of the hospitals in Blytheville and Osceola.

McGuire, "We are still struggling but the quality of the operation of the hospital has improved pretty significantly."

Looking back, Judge McGuire says he feels he has maintained the personal standard he set the day he walked into this office nearly 16 years ago.

"To treat everyone as reasonably alike as I possibly can."

So besides hanging out with his family, what's the judge gonna do when he walks out of his office for the last time? He says he doesn't know but he's got a lot of vacation days saved up. He told me he's only used 10 days since he's become judge.

One person has already announced his intention to run for McGuires' seat next November.

©2009 KAIT
ll rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.