Closing Comments from the October 25, 2022 BOC Meeting
First In-Person Board of Commissioners Meeting
Since COVID-19 Pandemic Began
Good afternoon, everyone:
On October 12 it was a pleasure to address the Emory Druid Hills Rotary Club as they celebrated the 13th anniversary of the club’s charter which is a great accomplishment. The event also highlighted polio awareness. As we all know, polio is a disease that has no cure and can only be avoided through vaccination. The club honored and commemorated the global efforts for a polio free future.
It was also the celebration of Diwali, which is one of the most popular festivals in Hinduism. Diwali symbolizes the spiritual victory of light over darkness, of good over evil, and of knowledge over ignorance. These are powerful words that we should all take to heart.
I would like to thank club President Manoj Barot for the invitation and all the club members for making me feel so welcome. I look forward to returning in the future.
On October 13 it was great to attend the Hispanic Heritage Month Luncheon hosted by GALEO. It was a wonderful event highlighting the achievements of our Latino friends. I would like to thank Elizabeth Scott from GALEO for the invitation to attend.
On October 15 our Planning & Sustainability Department, in collaboration with our Recreation Parks & Cultural Affairs Department, hosted the GoGreen event in Wade Walker Park. This event raised awareness and appreciation of sustainability in our communities. It was a beautiful day as folks were engaged in planting trees and other sustainability activities in the park. I would like to thank our Planning & Sustainability Department led by Director Andrew Baker, and our Park Department led by Director Chuck Ellis for hosting this event. I would also like to thank the principle corporate sponsor, DHL, and all of the other sponsors who helped to make this event a great success.
That afternoon it was an honor and privilege to attend an event honoring our friend and colleague Commissioner Larry Johnson celebrating his 20 years in elective office. I commend Commissioner Johnson for staying the course and for keeping the faith over his time in office. And I thank him for the example that he has set and for the advice and friendship that he has generously offered me during my time in office.
I have been on this Board of Commissioners for almost 6 years. And the thought of doing this for another 14 years is something that I frankly cannot get my head around. Therefore, my approach will be to take it one day at a time. I just want to thank Commissioner Johnson for allowing me to help share this wonderful milestone with him.
That evening, it was so much fun to attend the Latin Fever Ball at Flourish Atlanta. This event was hosted by the Latin American Association as that great organization celebrated 50 years in operation. It was also a great culmination of Hispanic Heritage Month Activities. It was nice to get dressed up for a great occasion. I would like to thank my friend Santiago Marquez, President and CEO of the Latin American Association for his tremendous leadership and for the invitation to attend such a wonderful event.
On October 16 it was great to attend the 5th Annual Women’s Business Expo at the DeKalb Conference Center. This event was presented by the Omega Support Center which continues to advocate for small businesses and create a collaborative, cohesive network to support and sustain women-owned small businesses. During the event I met many wonderful women entrepreneurs with many great products and services. And I stand in full support of helping these enterprising women in any way possible. I would like to thank Omega Support Center Executive Director Christy Bloodworth for her great leadership and for the invitation to attend.
October 19 was a monumental day in District 4 and DeKalb County as we welcomed the newest HOPE Inside Center at the Wells Fargo Branch location on Memorial Drive. This is a collaboration between Wells Fargo and Operation HOPE. This branch will have a focus on programs and initiatives for individuals who are “underbanked”. This revamped branch is part of Wells Fargo’s Banking Inclusion Initiative to help remove barriers to financial inclusion in underserved communities, particularly communities of color. And this is a necessary and worthy endeavor.
I would like to thank Wells Fargo CEO and President Mr. Charles Scharf and Operation HOPE Chairman, Founder, and CEO John Hope Bryant for this amazing partnership and for their commitment to serving the needs of our community. I thank them both for making the decision to plant their flag on Memorial Drive.
That evening I was able to join my friends at the American Legion Post 66 in Avondale Estates to provide my fellow veterans with an update on things happening in DeKalb County. It is always a pleasure for me to be with the men and women who have served this country. And I thank Post Commander Norm Davis for the invitation to attend.
On October 20 it was great to attend the Council for Quality Growth’s Four Pillar Tribute Dinner for Carol B. Tomé, CEO of UPS. It was a wonderful celebration for a great corporate leader and citizen of this region and this country. While there, I got to meet former Atlanta Mayor, former United Nations Ambassador and Civil Rights Movement legend, Andrew Young. Over the years I have been in rooms with Ambassador Young on several occasions. But that evening was the first time that I got up close to spend a moment with this amazing man. As always, he is in high demand at such events. Even so, he was very kind to spend a moment of his valuable time with me. At age 90 he is keeping on and his graciousness serves as a continued inspiration to me and to countless others.
On October 21 we held our regular Mayors Roundtable meeting. This is a meeting that I started during my second year in office for the purpose of building better communications and cooperation between DeKalb County and our municipal leaders. As always, we engaged in a candid discussion and great information was shared between fellow public servants. I would like to thank Doraville Mayor Joseph Geierman, Tucker Mayor Frank Auman, Brookhaven Mayor John Ernst, Avondale Estates Mayor Jonathan Elmore, Clarkston Mayor Beverly H. Burks, Dunwoody Mayor Lynn Deutsch, Decatur Mayor Patti Garrett, and Stonecrest Mayor Jazzmin Cobble for participating. I will continue to host these meetings for as long as the mayors see value in doing so.
On October 22 we held our first in-person Quarterly in the Fourth Community Breakfast Meeting in over two years. In fact, it was a hybrid meeting where folks were able to participate via Zoom as well. We held the meeting at the newly opened Tobie Grant Recreational Facility in Scottdale, which served as a great venue.
The meeting was well attended, and as usual we engaged with our citizens on several important issues. I would like to thank all the participants from the administration and our other guests for supporting this effort. I really appreciate it. And I look forward to our next such meeting in January. More information will be forthcoming across our communications platforms.
That afternoon I was able to join my colleagues from AMVETS Post 44 at our Fish Fry Fundraiser. As always, I stand in support of the efforts of my fellow veterans. And the fish was very good as well.
Finally, I would like to give a shout out to my good friend Pastor Vandy Simmons of Antioch AME Church for his 6th anniversary in that role. I was unable to attend the celebration on Sunday. But we did speak on Saturday and I extended my personal congratulations to him. I look forward to being with him and his congregation on November 13, as I have been invited to deliver the keynote address at their Veterans Program.
If you have any 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.