Doran captures another term as Ford sheriff
PAXTON — Ford County Sheriff Mark Doran won re-election to his third four-year term in Tuesday's primary election, capturing 62 percent of the vote in a race featuring Paxton Police Chief Bob Bane and Ford County Emergency Management Agency Coordinator Dennis Higgins.
The 47-year-old Doran, of Gibson City, garnered 1,762 votes, according to unofficial results released about 10:30 p.m. at the courthouse in Paxton. Bane, a Paxton resident, received 602, while Higgins, a Gibson City resident, got 461.
Doran is unopposed in November's general election.
"I'd like to thank all my supporters," Doran said. "I'm very pleased with the turnout. I would think that with the results, I must be doing something right, and I appreciate the Ford County voters' trust in me that I will continue to do the job I started."
Doran won his second-straight opposed race for re-election, after easily defeating two Paxton residents — Robert Yates and Christopher White — in the February 2010 primary.
Doran said he has unfinished business as sheriff.
"The next term, I'm not looking at sitting down and taking it easy," Doran said. "I always try to look to the future to see how much better the sheriff's office can be. I don't just sit back and watch things happen and just rest on my laurels. That's just not the way I am."
Doran freely admits that mistakes have been made in his eight years as sheriff, but he said he "most certainly felt that I didn't do anything to lose my job" — and he is glad voters saw it the same way.
"If anything, I made the sheriff's office something to be proud of, and people seem to be glad to come to work," Doran said. "Of course, it's work, but they don't seem to mind, and that's something I wanted to portray as I went through this last term."
Bane, meanwhile, said he is "happy the voters supported me." Bane won one precinct, Patton 6 in Paxton, among 22 in Ford County.
Bane, 54, called his first shot at public office a "unique experience" and said he did not know whether he might try for the sheriff's job again in 2018.
"I don't know. We'll have to see in four years," Bane said.
Higgins, 62, also seeking election for the first time, had no comment.