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Closing Comments from the 2/9/21 BOC Meeting

Good Afternoon Everyone: February is Black History Month. We should note the contributions that African Americans have made to this great country even before this was a country. We should note that Black History is American History. And we should acknowledge that the journey to make the United States of America a more perfect union is a journey that continues to this day. I would like to begin my comments today by thanking CEO Michael Thurmond for appointing me to a seat on the DeKalb County Board of Health. Obviously, this is a very critical time to serve in such a post, and the CEO’s vote of confidence in me means a great deal. I would also like to thank and commend Commissioner Jeff Rader for his years of dedicated service on the Board of Health. Commissioner Rader has left some big shoes to fill. But, I will do the best I can to make that happen. On January 28th, it was an honor to join my BOC Colleagues in participating in the annual Leadership DeKalb Government Day. As a graduate of the class of 2016, I am always happy the lend my support to this excellent organization. I would like to commend Caroline Enloe from Commissioner Rader’s office and Demetrius McCoy from Commissioner Mereda Davis Johnson’s office for their engagement in organizing this event. Later that day, my team and I were able to visit the Sue Kellogg Library in Stone Mountain along with members of the elected leadership of the City of Stone Mountain to see the latest progress on the library renovations. As you know, back in 2017 I allocated $1.5 million to fund this project. It is very gratifying to see it moving forward. And I am happy to report that real, tangible, positive improvements are being made. I want to commend our Library Director, Alison Weissinger for her tremendous leadership throughout this process. Hopefully, the newly renovated Sue Kellogg Library will be open to the public again in the late spring or early summer. It was a great privilege for my team and I to join Mayor Eric Clarkson and members of his economic development team for a tour of some of the great things going on in the City of Chamblee on January 29th. The visit was very insightful and the folks in Chamblee were such gracious hosts. There are certainly lessons to be learned from their success. We look forward to visiting again in the future. It was a pleasure to join my friends in Deer Creek via zoom for their annual meeting of the Homeowner’s Association membership on January 31st. Deer Creek is a beautiful neighborhood in District 4. I would like to thank my good friend Dr. Gerald Austin for the invitation to join and commend him for his outstanding leadership as HOA President. I wish the new leadership of the HOA nothing but success. And I look forward to the day when I can join you all again in Deer Creek in person. Also, I want to announce that February 14 will be the kickoff for the 12th Annual ‘Yes We Can – AGAIN’ food drive to benefit the Atlanta Community Food Bank. The kickoff event will be virtual this year. Donations to the food bank typically decline after the holiday season, but food insecurity is a year-long need, particularly in the face of a pandemic which has strained supply and resources. I know this drive is something that was always close to the heart of our former BOC colleague and friend Commissioner Kathie Gannon. And we will continue to support this initiative. I will close today by once again thanking the citizens of District 4 for affording me this opportunity to serve. It is indeed an honor. With that, if there is no other business to come before this Board of Commissioners today, I will entertain a motion to adjourn.

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