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Thumbs Up! April 7, 2014

ALBANY HERALD EDITORIAL BOARD: A look at good things happening in Albany and Southwest Georgia

A unanimous victory is the best way to look at just how Harry James is become the new Dougherty County commissioner for District 5 after the May 20 primary. That is to say that not one other person stepped up to qualify for the seat, leading one to believe the citizens of that part of the county are happy with the one candidate. James ran for the same seat in 2008 and was defeated by Gloria Gaines, the commissioner he will be replacing as she seeks to take the seat of chairman. Some defeated candidates take their unsuccessful campaigns as personal affronts and are never heard from again. Such is not the case with James. An indication of the sincerity of this soon-to-be county commissioner is the fact that, despite his earlier defeat, he has continued to attend meetings. We hope it will be a smooth transition from spectator to official.

The Pelham City Council, at its regular March meeting, was given the news that the Military Oder of the Purple Heart had selected its city as a Purple Heart City. The designation goes only to cities that excel in recognizing the veterans in their community. At the time of the meeting, Pelham was only the ninth city in Georgia to enjoy such an honor. Congratulations!

As the saying goes, do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life. Perhaps that view is a bit on the side of rose-colored-glasses side of things, but it sure beats the heck out of doing something every day that you don’t love. Chris and Katie Phillips stepped into the world of running, a passion of his since high school, and into a shaky business world in October and have yet to look back. The young couple, and parents of three children, own and operate Wildside Running in Lancaster Village, a store dedicated to providing runners and walkers with quality shoes, apparel and accessories not found in the big box stores or franchises. Being able to run or walk without discomfort is a key to keeping folks moving which, in turn, promotes good health. The Phillipses have hosted two runs and are involved in others throughout the community. Such action demands admiration.

Mark the calendar for April 12. HeritageBank of the South, along with Cintas Document Management, is hosting a Shred-a-Thon from 9 a.m. until noon at 721 N. Westover Blvd. Bank officials encourage people to bring any and all unwanted documents containing personal information to be safely and securely destroyed. Suggested items include old tax returns, bills, bank statements, expired passports and I.D. cards and even junk mail. Identity theft is the one of the fastest-growing crimes in the country. Here’s a chance to make it more difficult for the criminals and protect yourself and your family, all at one time.

The state of Georgia has a newly formed Child Welfare Reform Council. The panel has the mission to work to improve Georgia’s welfare system and to better protect the children who are in the system. The 21-member group will conduct a comprehensive review of the Division of Family and Children Services and then advise the governor on possible reforms and legislative fixes where needed. Appointees by Gov. Nathan Deal include judges, a university president, a detective, a foster parent and others, all carefully selected and highly qualified to improve the care and well-being of the children in Georgia. Among the appointees is state Sen. Freddie Powell Sims, D-Dawson, whose district includes Dougherty County. We’re certain Sims will do a fine job in this new capacity.

— The Albany Herald Editorial Board