Friday, January 04, 2008

Is Cathy Quist Attempting to Avoid a Review by the Knox County Auditor?

In today’s News-Sentinel Scott Barker details that in December Circuit Court Clerk Cathy Quist hired Knox County Auditor Richard Walls son to a $27,000 a year job. Last December she hired the spouse of County Commissioner Mark Cawood and this past August that employee had to resign due to embarrassing actions on her part that were brought to light by Brian’s Blog.

In July 2007, longtime employee Hubert Smith was laid off due to a lack of funding for his position in Ms. Quist operation. Ms. Quist and her staff believed erroneously that Mr. Smith a friend of Brian Hornback was the source for the findings related to the postings on Brian’s Blog.

Now in order to avoid any auditor review Ms. Quist hires the auditor’s son.

Now the Knox County Mayors Office in cooperation with the Knox County Commission will have to employ and pay an independent auditor as questions about the office operation of Ms. Quist has not been cleared since the questions of employee time records and hiring and promotion practice of the Clerks office are still an ongoing investigation.

With the departure of Sharon Cawood in August, Ms. Quist placed her longtime boyfriend and reported fiance Greg Shanks in the supervisory position, certainly a move of nepotism. With the hiring of Mr. Walls son it is clearly a move of cronyism.


Anonymous said...


Get your definitions straight - nepotism is defined as
"...the showing of favoritism toward relatives, based upon that relationship, rather than on an objective evaluation of ability or suitability." ( or "favoritism (as in appointment to a job) based on kinship" (

A woman's fiance is NOT a relative nor is a fiance kin to a woman. Now Quist is guilty of cronyism in having Shanks on her staff as well as hiring the son of the auditor, but until she marries Shanks (or hires a kinsman), she is not guilty of nepotism.

However, your point is valid...there is entirely too much cronyism and nepotism in Knox County government.

Brian Hornback said...

technically you are correct. Most people have/had assumed that they made their relationship legal. I didn't want to report him to be her husband when in fact they haven't "offically" hitched.

Anonymous said...

Is this the Cathy Quist who wants to be a GS Judge?

Brian Hornback said...