A pair of Democrats won contested races Tuesday for Dubuque County positions.

County attorney

In a battle of newcomers, C.J. May III topped his Republican challenger, Scott Nelson. Longtime County Attorney Ralph Potter, a Democrat, chose not to seek re-election.

“I’m very pleased and, at the same time, overwhelmed by the response from voters in the county and the city,” May said. “I can’t thank them all enough.”

May, 59, operates May Law Firm, P.C., and has more than 30 years of legal experience. He has served as a magistrate and is the city attorney for several communities in Dubuque County.

May’s previous elected experience includes a tenure on the Dubuque Community School Board.

He said his priorities in the position include encouraging collaboration among the attorneys in the county attorney’s office.

Nelson, 60, operates Nelson Law Office, P.C. in Dubuque. He has nearly 30 years of legal experience and 12 years of military experience.

Attempts Monday and Tuesday to get a home or cellphone number for Nelson were unsuccessful. Attempts to reach him via email and social media on Tuesday night also were unsuccessful.

County recorder

Incumbent John Murphy, a Democrat, bested Republican challenger Tim Schultz.

“I’m excited to serve another term, and I appreciate the voters giving me that opportunity,” he said.

Murphy, 36, was first elected to his office in 2014, succeeding longtime Recorder Kathy Flynn Thurlow. He previously worked for former U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley, D-Iowa.

The recorder’s office is charged with handling real estate records, vital records, military records and registrations for boats, snowmobiles and all-terrain vehicles.

Murphy said his goals in the coming months include finishing the digitization of land records for the office as well as looking at an office remodel. The latter would focus on adding a more private room for staff to talk with customers about certain types of records.

Schultz’s background includes experience in real estate, insurance, physical therapy and chiropractic fields.

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