Secretary of State Chapman resigning

Published 12:06 pm Monday, July 1, 2013

Secretary of State Beth Chapman is stepping down effective Aug. 1.

Chapman, a graduate of Fort Dale Academy, told The Associated Press that she has been offered a government and public relations consulting position that she can’t pass up. No details have been released about the new job, but Chapman said it does not involve lobbying.

Chapman has 17 months remaining in her second term as secretary of state. Chapman was first elected to the office in 2006.

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Prior to serving as secretary of state, Chapman served as state auditor. Chapman also served as state executive director for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, appointments secretary for former Gov. Fob James, and press secretary for former Lt. Gov. Steve Windom.

Chapman, 51, told The Associated Press she enjoyed being secretary of state, and that she was particularly proud of expediting voting by the military overseas, implementing voter identification laws, working to ensure honest elections, and starting online filing for the many business records that her office maintains.

“I believe I’ve created many things in this office that will outlast me and that’s a good feeling,” she said.

Gov. Robert Bentley will appoint someone to finish out Chapman’s term.

Before her announcement, three Republicans had already announced their intentions to seek the office in the 2014 election: Rep. John Merrill of Tuscaloosa, Crenshaw County Probate Judge Jim Perdue and former Montgomery County Probate Judge Reese McKinney.

Chapman was not eligible to seek re-election. Alabama’s secretary of state may serve only two consecutive terms before having to vacate the office for at least one term.