Become a Poll Worker

The Board is always looking for community minded individuals to work Election Day as paid Election Officials. Each precinct is made up of a Chief Judge, Democratic Judge, Republican Judge and a number of Assistants depending upon the type of election. The Judges are appointed to two-year terms and assistants are assigned for each election. A list of names to be considered for Judge positions are submitted to the Board by the Democratic and Republican parties each summer of odd-numbered years. Libertarian and Unaffiliated voters are allowed to serve as Judges and Assistants.

Requirements and Expectations:

  • Must be a registered voter in Catawba County
  • Must be of good moral character (NCGS § 163-41)
  • Should be able to read and write accurately, follow directions, work at a fast pace and lift up to 25 lbs
  • Should be proficient in using a computer (using a mouse, data lookup, printing, etc.)
  • Should be able to work as a team with other precinct officials
  • Must possess excellent customer service skills
  • Must leave politics at home. At the polls, Precinct Officials must be unbiased and fair to all and may not persuade or induce any voter to vote for or against any particular candidate or proposition

Time Commitment:

  • Must be available to work from 13-14 hours on Election Day without leaving the precinct
  • Available to attend a 2-3 hour training session in the months leading up to an election
  • Available for ~1 hour the day before an election to assist in setting up the precinct
  • [Chief Judge only] must pick up supplies from the Elections Office the day before the election and return them immediately after the polls close. Chief may also be required to obtain and return a key to the polling place facility from the property owner

Other considerations:

  • No person who is actively working on a candidate’s campaign or actively working for a Party would be allowed to serve as a Poll Worker during that election cycle
  • No person who is the wife, husband, mother, father, son, daughter, brother, or sister of any candidate for nomination or election may serve during any primary or election in which such candidate participates
  • Near relatives may not work together at the same polling site but may work separately at different locations

Oath of Office

Precinct Officials (all Judges and Assistants) are required to take an oath of office each 2-year term.

"I, __________, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support the Constitution of the United States; that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to the State of North Carolina, and to the constitutional powers and authorities which are or may be established for the government thereof; that I will endeavor to support, maintain and defend the Constitution of said State not inconsistent with the Constitution of the United States; that I will administer the duties of my office as chief judge of (judge of election in) ______precinct, __________County, without fear or favor; that I will not in any manner request or seek to persuade or induce any voter to vote for or against any particular candidate or proposition; and that I will not keep or make any memorandum of anything occurring within a voting booth, unless I am called upon to testify in a judicial proceeding for a violation of the election laws of this State; so help me, God."


Compensation and Duties

Poll workers in Catawba County are paid a flat fee for each election worked.

Chief Judge - $250
Chief Judges have primary responsibility for the elections process within their assigned precincts. On Election Day, Chief Judges oversee their assigned polling place and are responsible for all job assignments, all ballot inventories, and the resolution of any problems that may arise at the polls (with support from the BOE office). Duties include:

  • attending a 2-3 hour training class in the months leading up to each election
  • before the contacting the polling sites to make arrangements for setting up and conducting each election
  • contacting their assigned Judges and Assistants to confirm their availability to set-up at the polling sites
  • picking up voting supplies from the Board of Elections office on Sunay or Monday before the election
  • setting up the polling site (along with help of the other workers)
  • signing all official documents
  • serving on a panel to resolve any election-day challenges
  • securing the building
  • returning the supplies and voted ballots back to the BOE office.

Democratic and Republican Judge - $175
The Judges at each precinct are responsible for working closely with the Chief Judges to ensure a successful Election.

  • attending a 2-3 hour training class in the months leading up to each election
  • signing official documents
  • serving on a panel to resolve any election-day challenges
  • carrying out specific duties as assigned by the Chief to serve the voters fairly and without favor
  • assisting the Chief Judge with election set-up and with closing the polls, including guarding the ballots and securing the building.

Assistant - $150
Assistants serve as team players at their assigned precincts. Duties include:

  • attending a 2-3 hour training class in the months leading up to each election
  • carrying out specific duties as assigned by the Chief to serve the voters fairly and without favor
  • assisting the Chief Judge with election set-up and with closing the polls.
  • One assistant in selected precincts may be required to immediately deliver results to the Elections Office when the polls close—an extra $10 will be paid to the runner. The runner does not return to the precinct.

Poll worker application If you are interested in becoming a Catawba County Poll Worker,
fill out the online application form or return a printed and completed Election Official Application (PDF)