Thumbs Up - Sept. 23, 2013

Morningside Elementary School has a new mentoring program, Success for All. Community people come in and speak to the children about everything from making good grades, to future plans, to treating others with respect, and on the list goes. The newest mentor for the program is the Rev. Daniel Simmons of Mt. Zion Baptist Church. When Simmons spoke recently, he focused on goal-setting, planting tiny seeds for the future. Students receiving exemplary reports from teachers and other staff will be treated to free admission at an Albany State home football game as well as a chance to meet the Rams in person. If you or someone you know is interested in being a part of Success for All, give the school a call. These students are ready to listen.

When Denise Marshall ran for the the seat of Dougherty County Superior Court judge back in the fall of 2008, she could be seen on election day holding signs, smiling and encouraging people to vote. After a close race, Marshall was elected to the bench. Having been sworn in, Judge Marshall jumped straight out of the fire and into the frying pan. One of the first cases heard before the new judge was one involving the murder of a three-year old by the mother’s boyfriend, a difficult case for the most seasoned judge. There have been other murders, gang activities, rapes and more, including the Don Buie case. Judge Marshall was re-elected in 2012 and stayed on the bench doing what she has proven to do best. It is a great honor when a local judge is asked to serve in the place of a Georgia Supreme Court justice, but that is just where Denise Marshall is today, subbing for Justice Keith Blackwell. Congratulations.

School of Wash is a business owned by a mother and her young daughter. Put simply, the company sells homemade bath products for children, women, men and pets. Sunshine Bags consist of shampoo, conditioner and body wash. Founder Rebekah Davis has always encouraged her daughter to give outgrown clothes and toys to others but when the business got off the ground, she stepped up the giving. Just recently, through the generosity of School of Wash and its online shoppers, Lily Pad received 41 Sunshine Bags. Victims of physical and sexual abuse are eager to wash away the bad experiences and that is just what a Sunshine Bag can help do. Even reading the list of available scents will bring a smile-Key Lime Pie, Root Beer Float, Bubblegum, Grape, Apple Pie, Blue Candy and many, many more. Visit www.SchoolofWash.com to see how you can buy these all-natural products and give to the Lily Pad, all at the same time.

Dougherty County officials were briefed last week on the impending natural gas line that plans to travel through a 21-mile stretch of the county. The specifics of how the pipeline will be laid and where is of great concern, as well it should be, to homeowners in the pipeline’s path. When the state government affairs director for Spectra Energy took the podium, he stayed right on script regarding safety and the low impact the construction would have on landowners and the environment. It was Brian Fahrenthold’s, the aforementioned director, mistake, however, to quip that there are “beautiful homes in Commissioner (Ewell) Lyle’s district” and that the company had chosen to bypass that area with its pipeline. That bit of news spoken in the presence of Commissioner Gloria Gaines was the mistake. She came back with “My district’s south of the airport. Did you find less desirable homes in that area?” Backpedaling, Fahrenthold stated that “All homes are equal in my estimation.” Oh, really? Thank you Commissioner Gaines for looking out for not just your district but all of Dougherty County. Thumbs up, Commissioner Gaines.