One local district court clerk was recognized for her contributions to the profession by being named the Arkansas District Court Clerks Association 2016 clerk of the year.

Marie Johnson, Mulberry District Court clerk, was named clerk of the year during the association’s annual lunch banquet April 22 in Rogers.

Johnson was "overwhelmed" and "honored" by the designation, she said.

"I certainly was not expecting that," Johnson said. "I couldn’t even hardly speak."

Johnson has worked as a court clerk for 25 years and been a member of the ADCCA for about 22 years, she said. She was hired for the part time position of deputy court clerk in 1991 and went on to become chief clerk three years later.

Johnson became a court clerk "by accident," she said.

"They were needing someone to work part time; I took the job and enjoyed it," Johnson said. "When the chief clerk left in 1994, they put me in that position."

Johnson also has been Mulberry city clerk since 1994, she said. Mulberry is Johnson’s hometown and the place where she chose to have a family and raise kids, she said.

"It was good to be a part of the city and the court," Johnson said.

After joining the ADCCA, Johnson became certified in 1998 by taking the association’s three-year 30 hour course, she said.

"The ADCCA is just a worker training program for clerks and a great way to get to know other clerks, people you can call when you need help," Johnson said.

Since then, she maintains her training by taking 18 hours of courses every three years, what she calls "being updated."

"I’ve been updated 18 times since I was first certified," Johnson said.

Johnson also is certified as a city clerk through the state and IIMC - the International Institute of Municipal Clerks.

As a member of the ADCCA, Johnson has served on its board for eight years.

Johnson was the ADCCA at-large representative for four years, secretary for two years, treasurer for two years and was most recently elected as the second vice president, she said.

According to the ADCCA website, to be nominated for Clerk of the Year a clerk must be an active member of the Association for at least five years, exhibit leadership, and provide service to other clerks.

Mulberry Mayor Gary Baxter called Johnson an expert in her profession.

"Marie Johnson has been an outstanding city and court clerk for the City of Mulberry for almost 25 years," Baxter said. "Marie is a one-of-a-kind individual and employee who we are proud to call one of ours."