MACON COUNTY, Ill. (WAND) - Jim Root was sworn in as Macon County Sheriff Monday morning.

The 25-year veteran with the department was surrounded by family and friends as presiding judge for Macon County, Circuit Judge Thomas Griffith, swore him into the new role.
"I want to make sure I represent the citizens of the county in a way that is respectful to them, in addition to make sure the members of the office, the employees of the sheriff's office have what they need to complete the mission of the sheriff's office," Sheriff Root said.
This swearing-in ceremony comes after a battle for the title lasting years. Democratic candidate Tony Brown was announced the winner of the 2018 Macon County sheriff's race by one vote. After that announcement, a discovery recount was conducted and then an entire county-wide recount was conducted.
Thousands of ballots were contested from the 2018 General Election. A Champaign County judge heard from both Root and Brown's attorneys and ultimately overturned the 2018 election results. Judge Anne Benjamin ruled Republican candidate Jim Root the winner by just 11 votes at the end of May.
One week later, Brown announced he was retiring from the department.
"That election was in 2018. In order for us to continue to move forward, we have to look forward. We need to put this in the rearview mirror and keep pushing from there," Brown told the crowd on Monday at Root's swearing-in ceremony.
Root reflected on the past year as a roller coaster of a ride, citing ups and downs throughout the recount and trial, however, he is hopeful for the future.
His top priority is adjusting and changes to match the police reform bill that was recently passed.

"We need to do some policy changes to make sure we are complying with statute," Root said. 

Sheriff Root didn't go into detail about the exact changes needed to be made, but he made an effort tell WAND News that he will be working on hiring. 

While Root was officially sworn in as Macon County Sheriff, he said Sheriff Brown will still be in office until June 28 helping with the transition process. 

"Sheriff Brown is committed to this community and he grew up in this community just like I did. He said anything I need he will be there for me, so I will take him on his word and I plan on using him for things I cannot do in the community." 

Sheriff Tony Brown's last day with the department on June 28. 

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