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Closing Comments from the February 16, 2023 BOC Meeting

Good afternoon, everyone:

On January 24 it was great to join my friend Mayor Patti Garrett, the City Commissioners, and the citizens of Decatur for the State of the City address. The meeting was well attended at a wonderful venue. Good relations between DeKalb County and our respective municipalities are critical to our overall success. And it was an honor for me to show my support for our friends in Decatur, which of course is our county seat.

On January 25 we held our first Community Budget Information Meeting at the Stonecrest Library, which by the way is a lovely facility. Subsequent meetings in the series were held on February 8 at the Tucker-Reid H. Cofer Library, and on February 15 at the Dunwoody Library.

Photo collage of moments from the Community Budget Information Meetings
Moments from the Community Budget Information Meetings

As I said in those meetings, everyone does not have the opportunity to attend a regular BOC business meeting on Tuesday morning at 9am at the Maloof Building in downtown Decatur, or a Finance, Audit and Budget Committee meeting at 3:30pm on a Tuesday afternoon. Therefore, as Chair of the Budget Committee this year I thought it would be appropriate to “bring more opportunities to engage in this process to the people” so-to-speak. Based on the feedback that I have received I think this action was appreciated.

I want to commend and thank our Budget Director. T. J. Sigler for doing an outstanding job in presenting what can at times be complicated information in those meetings. And I would like to thank the administration for being supportive of this initiative. If everything shakes out properly we should be able to adopt our 2023 budget in our business meeting on February 28.

On January 27 we held our regular Mayor’s Roundtable meeting. This is an initiative that I started several years ago to strengthen the lines of communication between DeKalb County and our respective municipal leaders. As usual a significant amount of information was shared between the mayors in an informal and mutually supportive construct.

Screenshot from the Mayors Roundtable Zoom meeting
Mayors Roundtable

I would like to thank Avondale Estates Mayor Jonathan Elmore, Doraville Mayor Joseph Geierman, Dunwoody Mayor Lynn Deutsch, Tucker Mayor Frank Auman, Pine Lake Mayor Melanie Hammet, Brookhaven Mayor John Ernst, and Clarkston Mayor Beverly H. Burks for participating. I will continue to host these meetings for as long as the mayors see value in doing so.

On January 28 we held our first Quarterly in the Fourth Community Breakfast meeting for 2023 at the Tobie Grant Recreational Center. This is the sixth year that we are doing these meetings for the purpose of engaging directly with our citizens on the issues that are of concern to them. Over the course of this timespan these meetings have been very well-received by the community.

Collage of photos from the Quarterly in the Fourth Community Breakfast Meeting featuring BBBSMA
Highlights from the Quarterly in the Fourth Community Breakfast Meeting featuring BBBSMA

As usual the DeKalb County Government was well represented by leaders from various departments. And I would like to thank them all for being supportive of these meetings.

This meeting was also the formal kickoff of our 50 Men to Mentors campaign that we are doing in partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta. BBBSMA President and CEO Kwame Johnson along with members of his leadership team were on hand to get this initiative off to an outstanding start. There are plenty of boys in our community who need mentors and we are committed to making successful matches.

Subsequently, President Johnson and I participated in other events to promote this initiative. On February 3 we were guest on DJ ET Galaxy’s radio program on Streetz 94.5 Atlanta’s New Hip Hop Station which was a lot of fun. I want to thank program manager, Solo for helping to make that happen.

Picture of Kwame Johnson, DJ ET Galaxy and Commissioner Bradshaw standing together at the studios of Streets 94.5
Kwame Johnson, DJ ET Galaxy and Commissioner Bradshaw at the studios of Streets 94.5

And on February 5 we held an event at Antioch AME Church. I want to thank Pastor Vandy Simmons for being so supportive of this initiative.

Picture of Pastor Vandy Simmons, Upenda Dubose of BBBSMA, and Commissioner Bradshaw at the 50 Men to Mentors event on February 5th
Pastor Vandy Simmons, Upenda Dubose of BBBSMA, and Commissioner Bradshaw at the 50 Men to Mentors event on February 5th

The next event is scheduled for February 27. It will be a Panel Discussion on the benefits of Mentorship. There will also be an event on February 28 at Clarkston First Baptist Church. Details will be posted on my communications platforms. And we will continue to promote this Men to Mentors program until our mission objectives are achieved.

On January 31 it was great to join my friend and colleague Commissioner Mereda Davis Johnson for the opening of the East DeKalb Senior Center on Bruce Street in Lithonia. This is beautiful facility and I commend Commissioner Davis Johnson for her vision and persistence in getting this project completed.

On a side note, I look forward to opening our Community and Senior Center in District 4 in the coming months.

Rendering of the East Central DeKalb Community & Senior Center opening soon
Rendering of the Community & Senior Center opening soon

On February 13 it was a great privilege to join my fellow members of the DeKalb Section of the National Council of Negro Women for their Black History Month Program. I was featured as a guest speaker and I shared some thoughts on leadership. I was honored to do so as it reminded me of my days back in the classroom when I taught at Georgia State University. My presentation was well-received, and I really enjoyed the back-and-forth discussion during the Q & A session, and the fellowship with the members after. I would like to thank my dear friend and our outstanding section President, Derrica Williams for affording me this great opportunity.

Photo collage of NCNW Black History Month Program Highlights
NCNW Black History Month Program Highlights

If you have and questions or concerns, you may call my office at 404-371-4749 or visit my website at commissionerbradshaw.com. As always, I will conclude my remarks by thanking the citizens of District 4 and DeKalb County for affording me this opportunity to serve. It is indeed an honor.

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