Ethics Matters - and we are sure, all Queen Anne's citizens - are encouraged by the growing culture of ethical governance in Queen Anne's County. As their first legislative act two years ago, the current County Commissioners replaced the County's previously weak and unlawful ethics code with a law tobe proud of - the strongest on the Eastern Shore. They have, as is evident below, appointed a group of thoughtful and dedicated volunteer citizens to the challenging tasks of interpreting and enforcing the new law. Ethics Matters appreciates both Commissions - County and Ethics - for their work in
establishing and preserving the public's trust in their government.
Recently, the County Commissioners appointed Neal Jackson of Church Hill to the Ethics Commission and reappointed Robert Mueller from Centreville, each for a five year term.
Mr. Jackson was the Chief Legal Officer and Chief Ethics Officer (Vice President for Legal Affairs, General Counsel and Secretary) of National Public Radio from 1996 to 2007. Before that he was a partner in the Washington office of the Chicago-based law firm of Bell, Boyd, & Lloyd. Mr. Jackson also served as Chairman of the Hearing Committee of the Board on Professional Responsibility of the DC Court of Appeals, conducting discipline proceedings under the ethics code involving members of the DC Bar. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina and Georgetown Law School. Mr. Jackson will serve as an alternate on the QAC Ethics Commission. Alternate members take part in all Ethics Commission discussions and proceedings, and vote when a member is absent.
Mr. Mueller, who joined the Commission as an alternate, has been serving as Chairman of the Ethics Commission for the past few years. He, too, is an attorney, retired from the federal government where he was Senior Commissioner for Judge Andrew Effron of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces. Under Mr. Mueller's leadership, the Commission has held numerous informational workshops with County officials and employees, discussing the ethics code and its requirements and answering questions.
Other members of the Ethics Commission include Kendall Ruffato, an attorney who is the Executive Secretary to the Attorney Grievance Commission of Maryland. She joined the Commission in 2007, along with Rev. Nanese Hawthorne, the Rector of St. Luke's Parish in Church Hill.
In January 2008, the Commissioners appointed Benjamin Tilghman of Centreville and Harold Wilson of Chester to the Commission. Mr. Tilghman is active in farming on his historic property on Tilghman Neck outside Centreville. He retired in 2004, following a career in book publishing. Mr. Wilson had a 30-year career in management of non-profit housing organizations and international development. He is a published writer of poetry and fiction.
The Ethics Commission meets on the third Monday of each month at 5:30 p.m. in the County Commissioners' Meeting Room, except when that day falls on a holiday, in which case the Commission meets on the fourth Monday of the month. The meetings are open to the public.