The Union Recorder

March 6, 2013

State Democratic Party memorializing leaders’ service

Kyle Collins
The Union-Recorder

MILLEDGEVILLE — Georgia democrats get a chance to showcase their best and brightest leadership Saturday at the 2013 Jefferson-Jackson Dinner. The event, held at the Georgia World Congress Center, has hosted Pres. Barack Obama and past Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to name a few.

This year’s dinner features Ted Strickland, former Ohio governor and keynote speaker at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte.

Baldwin County and 10th Congressional District Democratic Party Chairman Quentin T. Howell said all the political leaders attend the yearly gathering.

“I had a chance to speak during the program the last two years. I plan to be on the program this year as well. This is one of the highest honors I’ve ever had,” Howell said.

At least 30 county party participants are attending the Atlanta festivities.

“It’s very exciting and does me proud for us to have as many of our rank and file Democrats and leaders representing us at such a huge event,” the party committee chair said.

Beyond the political aspect, the Jefferson-Jackson Dinner will honor democratic leaders that have recently passed. Baldwin has five submissions.

Charles Mathis Jr. was the first African American attorney for the City of Milledgeville for more than a decade. He served as a personal lawyer to many celebrities and famous athletes throughout his career.

Bobby Murphey and Jake Goldstein both shared the title of Baldwin County Democratic Committee chair during their illustrious years of service.

The dinner will also memorialize Jack B. Ward, a longtime Democrat from Eatonton.

Milledgeville’s first African American city councilwoman and Mayor Pro-Tempore Dennette O. Jackson is the final local leader included in the dinner’s program.

The Jackson, Ward and Murphey families are attending the ceremony. This is the first time the dinner programming incorporates this recognition of past efforts.

Jackson’s oldest daughter Patricia Hogan said it’s heartwarming to know so many people were concerned with her mother’s community contributions. The family appreciates the honor.

“It’s going to be a pleasure to attend such an affair. I’m sure she would be proud that we are able to go, but especially to be recognized in that respect and appreciated for all the work she did,” Hogan said.

Howell said what these five did for their communities can’t be summed up in a short video but taking time to honor those who paved the way is important.

“Outside of all the politics, it’s good to take a step back no matter what party you are in and be able to acknowledge leaders in your community,” Howell said. “What made them leaders wasn’t that they were only democrats it was that they were leaders to the entire community. As a young chairman, that gives me great direction to follow.”

The local and district democratic chair said Baldwin County shines within the party, as the district consistently voted that direction the last 10 years.

Having the county well represented this Saturday tells Howell a lot about current events.

“It gives me a great resolve to know we are moving forward to the 2014 state elections from a position of strength, and we plan to continue doing that,” Howell said.

There are still event tickets available. Call Howell at (478) 414-1120 if interested.

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