County board to commemorate ‘Buster’ Talbot

The Anoka County Jail won’t be renamed after Ralph “Buster” Talbot,” the longest-serving sheriff in Anoka County history, but it will be commemorated in his honor.

A plaque in honor of Talbot will be placed on the exterior south facing wall of the jail, which is located adjacent to the Anoka County Government Center/Anoka County Courthouse.

According to Martha Weaver, county public information manager, the plaque will contain information on Talbot’s achievements during his tenure as sheriff.

Next to the plaque will be placed Talbot’s name and his years of service, Weaver said.

Back in August, the Anoka County Board tabled a resolution proposed by County Commissioner Dan Erhart that would rename the jail in recognition of Talbot, who was sheriff for 26 years – 1960 through 1986 – before he retired.

But the county board did not have a policy in place for county buildings being named after people so the resolution was tabled to a work session Aug. 28.

When it was brought back to the board for action Sept. 11, the word “named” had been removed and the word “commemorate” was inserted.

According to Erhart, discussions also took place with the Talbot family on the wording of the recognition and they agreed with the solution.

The board approved the revised resolution unanimously and Mike Clark, a nephew of Talbot, thanked the board from the family.

The resolution also declared Sept. 20 as Ralph “Buster” Talbot Day in Anoka County.

That evening the Anoka County Historical Society hosted a recognition dinner and program for Talbot at the Courtyards of Andover.

This was a benefit for the historical society’s endowment fund.

Talbot, who was born in Coon Rapids, graduated from Anoka High School in 1947 and served in the U.S. Army/National Guard.

He joined the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office as a deputy in 1952, then in December 1960 at the age of 31, he was appointed by the then-Anoka County Board to be sheriff after L.A. “Mike” Auspos retired.

The vote was 3-2 with County Commissioner Al Kordiak, the father of current County Commissioner Jim Kordiak, casting the decisive vote.

Talbot was elected sheriff every four years from that point until his retirement in 1986.

The existing Anoka County Jail was built in 1983 during Talbot’s tenure as sheriff.

In addition, while he was sheriff, Talbot put in place the first countywide radio system for emergency agencies.

In commemorating the jail in honor of Talbot, the county board extended its “sincere and grateful appreciation for his dedicated service as Anoka County Sheriff from 1960 to 1986.”

Peter Bodley is at [email protected]