Sheriff Jesse Bane's second term as the county's top law enforcement officer began in front of about 200 of his supporters, members of his command staff and a number of other elected officials Thursday night.
But the most important guest of the evening was his wife, Lou Ann, who Bane soon acknowledged as his boss.
"For you men who have not figured this out yet, women rule the world," Bane said. "And I want to thank the women for letting us believe that we do."
It was for that reason that Bane said he deviated from the speech he prepared until 2 a.m. Thursday morning, and instead spoke from the heart as his wife requested.
From the County Council chambers on North Bond Street, the sheriff addressed the financial challenges facing his office, while showing gratitude to those who helped him retain his seat.
"Public safety is an expensive proposition, but it's also a very important proposition," Bane said. "My heartfelt thanks to each of you."
In what the Democrat called a tangent, Bane thanked the Republicans who supported him in an election that was decided by a few thousand votes.
"You cannot win an election in Harford County unless people are willing to cross party lines," Bane said.
The sheriff also emphasized that the citizens' party lines play no role in the service provided to them while vowing to make Harford County a safer place.
"We have the best sheriff's office in the state of Maryland," Bane said.