Hugh's Goals for the Department include:
- Provide "hands-on" management and leading by example.
- Operate the Department in a cost-effective manner.
- Protect and safeguard the County's public records.
- Maintain a comprehensive security and backup plan for all systems and records.
- Provide a supportive work environment and leadership to staff.
- Increase the accessibility of services for the public at branch offices and Saturday openings.
- Maintain open communications with the business community for title and mortgage recordings.
Hugh's Accomplishments During his Tenure:
- Relocated the department's North County Branch Office from Fullerton to Anaheim in February 2019, maximizing taxpayers' dollars by doubling the office's space and offering customers expanded marriage services with two ceremony rooms, document recording services, and passport services.
- Reached a milestone during May 2019 in electronic recording history by surpassing nine million electronically submitted and recorded documents - maintaining the department as a nationwide industry leader since 1997.
- Implemented Special Saturday Openings for over five years making the department's services more accessible and convenient for working families and busy individuals - earning the department a 2015 NACo Achievement Award and a 2014 CSAC Merit Award.
- Launched the department's new O.C. Weddings mobile app allowing customers to both complete a marriage license application and to set an appointment for a civil marriage ceremony - all from the convenience of any mobile device.
- Implemented Auto indexing and redaction of real property documents - making them available to the public two days after recording and earning the department a 2017 NACo Achievement Award.
- Implemented a Government to Government (G2G) component to the department's award winning SECURE electronic recording system - giving government agencies the ability to submit recordable documents electronically.
- Implemented a new Electronic Fictitious Business Name Statement application and filing system - making the process more user friendly and reducing the duration of phone calls regarding FBN issues received by the department.
- Opened a passport and marriage license unit at the County Community Service Center in Westminster.
- Opened a passport services office at the Laguna Hills branch to serve south county residents.
- Implemented the electronic processing of check payments received from title companies helping reduce processing times, saving staff time and increasing efficiency by reducing manual check processing from 90% to 11%.
- Saved over $3 million in salary and benefits since becoming Clerk-Recorder in 2013.
- Saved taxpayers money by reducing the fee for passport photos from $15 to $10.
- Expedited the availability of birth and death certificates from 60 days to 30 days.
- Rolled out public terminals with touch screen technology at all of the department's locations - making it easier for people to complete their applications for services without having to hassle with a keyboard and a mouse.
- Launched a pilot program to expedite the ordering of marriage certificates at the department's Old County Courthouse Marriage Services Unit - eliminating the need for couples to return to the office to purchase their marriage certificate or having to order it by mail, reducing the number of calls to the department's information line and helping shorten lines and waiting times at the department's offices.
- Streamlined real property recording services at the department's Fullerton and Laguna Hills branch offices by adding an experienced recordable document examiner at each location.
- Digitized and converted 210 volumes of property indexes from 1889-1953 that are kept at the Orange County Archives to microfilm.
- Completed an extensive conservation of 210 volumes of property indexes from 1889-1953 including the most damaged deeds kept at the Orange County Archives.
- In September 2014, became the first Recorder's office in the nation to process and record over 7 million electronically submitted documents - making the department the nationwide leader in electronic recording.
- Implemented policies and procedures for department staff to improve customer service.
- Strengthened accounting oversight by implementing stronger internal controls and documentation.
- Improved customer service by increasing weekday business hours at the department's branch offices making them more convenient to the public.
- Recruited additional experience staff for the Clerk-Recorder's financial group.
- Recruited additional experience staff to strengthen the Clerk-Recorder's purchasing group.
- Restructured the department's senior leadership to strengthen efficiency and oversight.
Awards and Recognitions Under Hugh's Leadership
- In 2021, received the prestigious Innovation Award from the California State Association of Counties for the department's Hitched at Honda Center program.
- In 2021, received two National Achievement Awards from the National Association of Counties for the department' s COVID-19: Hitched at Honda Center through Marriage Services and COVID-19: Hitched with Virtual Wedding Services award nominations.
- In 2020, received a National Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties for the department's OC Weddings Mobile App in the category of Information Technology.
- In 2019, received a National Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties for the department's G2G - Government to Government component in the category of Information Technology.
- In 2018, received a California Association of Counties Merit Award in recognition of the department's G2G: Government to Government Recordings Made Easy submission in the category of Government Finance, Administration & Technology.
- In 2018, received a Rose Award from the Orange County Taxpayer's Association for the department's innovation and services while saving taxpayers money.
- In 2018, was nominated by the Orange County Business Council for its Turning Red Tape into Red Carpet Award in the Leadership in Public Service and Business Retention categories.
- In 2018, was awarded the County Elected Official of the Year by the Republican Party of Orange County.
- In 2018, received the Community Award for Leadership from Westcliff University.
- In 2018, received an Orange County Taxpayer Watchdog Award from the Orange County Auditor-Controller's Office.
- In 2017, received a National Association of Counties Achievement Award in recognition of the department's Auto-Indexing and Redaction – Increasing the Accuracy and Access to the Public Records Program.