Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 9

DIRECTOR'S DESK By Ross King Executive Director >> Make no mistake about this characteristic - leadership is demanding, debilitating and challenging and takes consistency along with a high level of resiliency. Leadership Always Prevails ON JUNE 3, I reflected on the fact that I have been honored to work on behalf of the leadership and membership of ACCG for 29 years. A month prior on May 1, I paused and realized how grateful I am for the blessings I have experienced thanks to our tremendous Board of Managers as well as our very dedicated professional staff for experiencing my sixth anniversary as ACCG executive director. I did not allow either of these dates to pass without personal notice because it afforded me the chance to reflect upon the thousands of individuals I have interacted with throughout my professional career at ACCG. My periods of reflection were filled with a wide variety of solid memories of elected and appointed county government officials in our great state (both past and present) who have served their respective communities with grace, skill, intellect, passion and purpose. My reflections were constantly marked with an ever-present characteristic - leadership. The bottom line on all public policy issues - past, present and future - is the clear and present demand for public sector leaders. Our national, state and local constituencies actively seek those whom they believe exude the qualities of a trusted and wellinformed leader to serve on their behalf. The presence of leadership in any public policy environment will guarantee that purposeful and proper decision making not only remains a priority but constantly takes place. If one were to believe the pundits who publish and promote their thoughts using all available communication means including visual, print and electronic, they would think that our public sector system is destined for demise. I for one find such notions troubling as I have confidence in the level of government in which I am most familiar-local government, specifically county government. One knows when leadership is present. Leadership is undeniable and unmistaken. This applies to local government as constituents know when their county has been graced with local leaders. County residents are affected by the results of the individuals elected to serve and represent them. Some counties have for decades been framed around the community demand for leaders to take charge and remain in charge. Other counties have experienced periods of strong leadership but have not been able, for numerous reasons, to sustain a consistent focus on that characteristic. Throughout my career, I have been fortunate to have had the opportunity to engage with strong and purpose driven local leaders. Many have served on our ACCG Board of Managers or one of our service boards (insurance, retirement or civic affairs). Others have served as an officer on one of our policy committees. Some may have not been able to serve directly for our organization but have left indelible marks on their respective communities. Make no mistake about this characteristic - leadership is demanding, debilitating and challenging and takes consistency along with a high level of resiliency. It is not for the faint at heart, yet every day in Georgia the selfless men and women who proudly wear the elected or appointed "badge of public service" in our counties place themselves squarely in the middle of circumstances that require a leader to be present. Somehow and some way the public servants find within themselves the fortitude, skill and ability to forge ahead. This is the case even when those for whom they serve either do not support or cannot embrace the vision they espouse. Throughout my ACCG career and my many miles of travel to every county in Georgia, I have again and again witnessed the results of what local leaders have accomplished. Some elected officials have lost their seat as a result of their leadership stance only to be held up at a later date and lauded for taking their position and holding firm. Others have achieved a series of accomplishments over an extended period of time knowing each day not to settle because changing times demand new and fresh perspectives. Accompanying these elected leaders in many instances are appointed leaders who have the skill and ability to carry approved policies, something that requires a great deal of personal fortitude. As you continue to take steps to improve your respective county governments, know that your search to further improve our local communities will never be without the demand that local leaders be ever present and that leadership will solve any and all public policy matters. ■ SUMMER 2016 www.accg.org 9 http://www.accg.org/

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Georgia County Government - Summer 2016

President’s Message
Director’s Desk
Cover Story: Growth and Opportunity in Elbert County
Georgia Counties Get Results in ACCG’s Policy Areas
Insights from Georgia’s Congressman Lynn Westmoreland
Making Strides for Healthy Communities
Preparing for the Zika Virus in Georgia
Georgia Public Libraries Shine
Counties Emerge into the Digital Age
News & Notes
Index of Advertisers
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - cover1
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - cover2
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 3
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 4
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 5
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 6
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 7
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - President’s Message
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - Director’s Desk
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - Cover Story: Growth and Opportunity in Elbert County
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 11
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 12
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 13
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 14
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 15
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - Georgia Counties Get Results in ACCG’s Policy Areas
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 17
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 18
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 19
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - Insights from Georgia’s Congressman Lynn Westmoreland
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 21
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - Making Strides for Healthy Communities
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 23
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 24
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 25
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - Preparing for the Zika Virus in Georgia
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 27
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - Georgia Public Libraries Shine
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 29
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 30
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 31
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - Counties Emerge into the Digital Age
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 33
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 34
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 35
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - 36
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - News & Notes
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - Index of Advertisers
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - cover3
Georgia County Government - Summer 2016 - cover4
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