2020 Primary Voters Guide: Kent Brown wants to continue improving register of deeds office
photo by: Contributed photo
The man who is second in charge of Douglas County’s Register of Deeds Office said he has plans for the department if he is elected its new leader.
Kent Brown, 34, who has served as deputy register of deeds since 2015, said he wants to become the next register of deeds to continue his work of bringing the office into the 21st century, he said.
“I have been doing this for a while,” Brown said. “I realize the more I do it, the more passionate I am about it (and) I want to continue the work I have started.”
The Register of Deeds Office is responsible for recording various information related to the ownership of real property in Douglas County. Brown is one of two Democratic candidates running to fill the position that will be left by longtime Register of Deeds Kay Pesnell.
Since 2010, Brown has mostly worked for the register of deeds office. He said he briefly worked for a title company in 2014, giving him experience on both the private and public side of real estate ownership. With years of experience, Brown said he believes he has the right knowledge and relationships to serve the office well.
“I really feel like I’m the best candidate for Douglas County,” Brown said.
If elected, Brown said he wants to continue improving the technology and accessibility of the office. He said the department recently digitized “every single sheet of paper” in the office, and those documents are now accessible online. Now, he wants to make it easier to search through those documents, which may require the creation of a new database.
Brown also wants to focus on document security in the office, as some residents said they are worried about document fraud. While he’s not yet sure what technology is available, Brown said wants to look into ways to notify residents if their names appear on important documents that pass through the department.
Brown noted these upgrades to the office might also be possible without the need for new revenue. He said the office often has a surplus of revenue made through document fees, which he wants to leverage to improve technology.
“That’s a great way to modernize without … impacting taxpayers,” Brown said.
Brown was born in Lawrence, but raised in Bolivar, Mo. He said he moved back to Lawrence to attend the University of Kansas, where he graduated with a degree in English in 2009. He later earned a master’s degree in business administration from Baker University.