Cockrell addresses League on her experiences as election observer

by Quinton Sheppard - Posted on Oct 03, 2012 - 12:18 PM

Photo: Barbara Cockrell of Middlesex, was the guest speaker at Friday afternoon’s Middle Peninsula League of Voters’ “Lunch with the League” at First Presbyterian Church, Gloucester. Photo by Quinton Sheppard

Barbara Cockrell of Middlesex, was the guest speaker at Friday afternoon’s Middle Peninsula League of Voters’ “Lunch with the League” at First Presbyterian Church, Gloucester. Photo by Quinton Sheppard

It may be difficult for some to understand how voting in the U.S. differs so greatly from other countries. However, those who attended Friday afternoon’s Middle Peninsula League of Voters’ "Lunch with the League" forum at First Presbyterian Church, Gloucester, got a first-hand look.

Former Middlesex County voter registrar Barbara Cockrell, the guest speaker at Friday’s program, discussed her time as an election observer and supervisor in various countries including the Republic of Belarus, Krygyz Republic, Bosnia and Kosovo.

Cockrell also provided a glimpse into the inner workings of the Virginia State Board of Elections as she was its director of election operations from 2003-2010.

After concluding her time as general registrar, Cockrell said she received a letter from the U.S. Department of State, asking her to go to Bosnia to supervise the elections following the U.S.-brokered Dayton Peace Accords.

"I fell in love with the region and its people," Cockrell said. "I was touched by being in a post-war place."