December 5, 2022 (Annapolis, Maryland)— The Anne Arundel County Register of Wills Office announces the swearing-in of Erica Griswold as its 29th leader and first African American to ever assume the post in its 246-year history. The public ceremony was held in the historic Anne Arundel Circuit Court with the oath administered by the Clerk of Court and witnessed by Griswold’s family, friends, and several current office staff members on Monday, December 5, 2022.
A native Annapolitian and former Community Outreach Specialist with the Mayor’s Office, Griswold has been a fixture in civic affairs for decades. She has leveraged an associate degree in Communications from Anne Arundel Community College and her local roots to serve as a link between bureaucrats and members of traditional underserved or marginalized communities. In 2020, Griswold founded Shadez of Excellence as a non-profit vehicle for empowering women and promoting equity.
Griswold was elected on November 8, 2022 in the Maryland General Election and will serve a four-year term.
Her remarks offered some insights on goals she plans to pursue as outlined during her campaign for the office of Register of Wills which include transparency, efficiency, increased performance, and an enhanced “customer-centric” focus. She pledged to better educate the public on the importance of creating, filing, and updating wills; and to establish a pro-active and inclusive outreach effort.
“Although I am the first African American Register, we represent all of Anne Arundel County residents and our focus will be what we campaigned on educating our community to protect family assets,” Griswold said. She continued by saying, “Where there is a will, there is a way!”
Following her election last month, a transition team was assembled to review the office’s operational procedures, staffing, budgets, and other resources. The group will soon offer recommendations for shaping and implementing a plan to affect the types of improvements and upgrades citizens suggested were critical during numerous community discussions held during the past year’s campaign season. Guidance from this team will support anticipated systemic and human capital decisions to be considered in the coming weeks.
The office also announced the swearing-in of Darius A. Stanton as Chief Deputy Register of Wills today. Stanton, born and raised in Annapolis, has had a storied career as a human services professional and non-profit executive. He has a master’s degree in Human Services Administration from Lincoln University and has functioned in leadership roles with the Boys & Girls Clubs of both the Washington Metro and Greater Baltimore regions. Currently, Stanton serves as president of the Maryland Black Caucus Foundation and holds several civic posts including chairman of the Annapolis Art, Sports, and Leadership Academy.