Byron Macfarlane became Register of Wills for Howard County on December 1, 2010. He took the reigns from his predecessor, who had held the position for 24 years and had worked in the office for 9 years prior to that – 33 years total. After such a long period of time, Byron brought a fresh perspective to how the office operated.
“When I got here, we were issuing receipts in carbon paper triplicate, our file cabinets were overflowing and broken, and we were recording Orphans’ Court hearings with an audio cassette player. It was clear to me we had a lot of work to do to bring this office into the 21st century and streamline our procedures. So I set my staff to the task of beginning a top to bottom review of how we operated. From procurement to technology, from finances to internal communication, we identified many areas that needed improvement. As a result, I’ve implemented nearly 200 new policies, reforms, improvements, and upgrades to ensure we are operating as efficiently as possible.”
Byron’s leadership has allowed his staff to minimize the time they spend on administrative tasks and maximize the time they have to interact with the public. His office has become a model for how government should provide services to people in need. In the next term, he pledges to continue to seek ways to improve efficiency and make his office as user-friendly and flexible as possible for Howard County families.