Dear Decaturish – In support of District 3 DeKalb County Commissioner Larry JohnsonDeKalb County District 3 Commissioner Larry Johnson speaks to the crowd during a candlelight vigil for democracy held outside of the Porter Sanford III Performing Arts & Community Center in greater Decatur on July 17 honoring the life and legacy of the late Rep. john Lewis on the anniversary of his death. Photo by Dean Hesse.
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My name is Anne Randolph, and I am representing the Concerned Neighbors Association of South DeKalb County, where Mr. Robert Dennis is the president. This letter is being written to congratulate and pledge our support of Commissioner Larry Johnson and to share some positive thoughts about his commitment and dedication to the citizens of DeKalb County.
Commissioner Johnson has a proven record of honesty, integrity and hard work. Because of his honest approach and willingness to listen to community leaders and stakeholders Commissioner Johnson’s influence is recognized and appreciated on a local, state, and national level.
Commissioner Johnson is a man of faith whose conviction and commitment is known throughout the faith community. He is a family man often accompanied by his wife, and daughter, who share his vision that when communities work together, sharing ideas and resources, we can move forward and thrive because we are all better when we work together.
He was first elected to his Commission seat in November 2002 as the youngest commissioner ever elected to serve this seat, since that time he has implemented many programs and services that directly benefits the people of his district.
Such as, new and improved libraries, beautiful Senior living facilities and centers where Seniors can engage with each other and stay active. Grocery stores that provide quality nutritious foods while at the same time the citizens are able to pick up their prescriptions from the pharmacies located within the stores. Additionally, Commissioner Johnson lead our community in the demolition of an old Kmart building that was a blight and a danger to the community. After the demolition of the building, he worked with the Walmart Corporation to bring the only Walmart inside of the 285 corridors to Gresham Road which created jobs and an economic boast for the community.
Another initiative Commissioner Johnson implemented is the Prescription Discount Drug Card through the National Association of Counties (NACo) where participants in the program can save up to 20% off of their prescriptions not covered by any other insurance.
Given his knowledge of the health disparities that exist in our community, Commissioner Johnson implemented a walking program called DeKalb Walks making this initiative the official exercise of DeKalb County, and the only such program in the United States. These and other health initiatives have been implemented to help to improve the health and wellbeing of his constituents. His commitment to health was captured by former First Lady Michelle Obama and he became involved in her national “Let’s Move Campaign. We are so proud to have the Michelle Obama walking trail in District (3) We are extremely proud of his efforts to include the Arts in our community where people of all ages can enjoy plays, and program that promote cultural opportunities. The Porter Sanford Performing Center and a 1000 seat amphitheater are both located on Rainbow Drive in Decatur, Ga
The Concerned Neighbors continue to be inspired by the relentless agenda that is undertaken by Commissioner Johnson and his office.
In spite of his busy schedule, he makes himself available to attend community meetings and events that showcase the positive work that is going on in the community.
Commissioner Johnson maintains a positive rapport with the public safety department, Parks and Recreation Code enforcement, and other public officials who serve our community
He is recognized on a State and National level for his leadership and dedication to help to provide opportunities and resources to enhance the quality of life for all citizens of Georgia.
Just recently, the Honorable Commissioner Larry Johnson was elected President of the National Association of Counties (NACo). He has been active in NACo since 2005 and has served in numerous leadership capacities within NACo. There is no doubt that all of the Counties involved in this organization will benefit from his leadership.
At the onset of the Pandemic, Commissioner Johnson took the lead in making sure that the people of his district were well-informed about the importance of following the protocols given by CDC And other healthcare professionals.
The Concerned Neighbors stand ready to pledge our support to Commissioner Johnson as we work together to improve the lives of the citizens of district (3)
Together we can create a brighter future for everyone because, “We are truly better when we work together.”
The Concerned Neighbors Association
Mr. Robert Dennis, President
There are many of us out there. We do what we can in our neighborhoods to try and make things a little better. Sometimes, we are labeled ‘community organizers’. Really, we are neighbors. We lay down roots. We do what we can to make life better in our neighborhoods.
After more than 20 years now, I can say that my work trying to help would be much harder were it not for the blessing of truly dedicated public servants. For example, in my little corner of East Lake, an Atlanta in DeKalb community, so much of the progress we have seen has been because we have had Larry Johnson as our DeKalb Commissioner.
Commissioner Johnson is up for re-election this May, and I would like to encourage the voters of District 3 to keep him right where he is.
I have personally worked alongside Commissioner Johnson on many projects. He is affable, unassuming, extremely knowledgeable. Truly, Commissioner Johnson is one of us. He’s a ‘roll up the sleeves’ kind of elected official.
Most recently, Commissioner Johnson launched an innovative grant program to assist DeKalb homeowners in District 3 with needed home repairs. Unlike similar attempts, Larry’s plan cuts the red-tape and allows homeowners themselves to decide where the money would be best spent. This new program attacks a serious issue in many of our neighborhoods: How do we help our neighbors age in place without fear, in the face of ever rising home values and financial pressures.
Larry was instrumental in the Moreland Avenue Living Center Initiative. This work continues to expand the vision of the south Moreland corridor, attracting business, new residents, and creating jobs in Atlanta in DeKalb.
When we needed help with busy Memorial Drive, Commissioner Johnson helped deliver $20 million to slow traffic and make Memorial Dr. safer for our neighbors as part of the fix. Drivers are happy, too. The D.O.T. tell us we are getting better throughput on Memorial Dr than before the crazy days of the ‘suicide lanes’.
I was so thankful for his leadership and partnership as President of the East Lake Community when crime started to get out of hand on the border of out East Lake (Atlanta) and unincorporated DeKalb. Commissioner Johnson gathered the neighborhood leadership from both sides of the border. He brought together representatives from local businesses and DeKalb Police. He worked alongside our city council representative and Atlanta PD to find a real solution. As a result, neighbors on both sides of the Atlanta DeKalb border felt safer and the businesses in the area became safer for patrons and employees.
Commissioner Johnson has also been the driving force for enhancing the business district along Candler road, ushering in $10 million in renovations to calm traffic and make the area more appealing and attractive to businesses.
Commissioner Johnson works tirelessly for District 3. In my experience, there has never been a time when I reached out for help, asked a question, or brainstormed an idea, that the Commissioner was not quickly responsive and available.
That’s the magnifier we need as local, grassroots, leaders and neighbors, in District 3.
Let’s be sure we TURN OUT to VOTE so we can keep Commissioner Johnson as our District 3 DeKalb County Commissioner.
– Kyle Caldwell
This letter is written in support of the reelection of DeKalb County District 3 Commissioner Larry Johnson. Some of the reasons that I support Commissioner Larry Johnson’s reelection are listed below.
Larry Johnson has supported my community for almost three decades – even before he became a DeKalb County Commissioner. I knew him and worked with him while he was the DeKalb County coordinator of President Jimmy Carter’s Atlanta Project. In this capacity, Larry Johnson provided recommendations, guidance, and other invaluable support of our community’s Civic organization. He provided similar support to many other community organizations throughout all of DeKalb County while he held this position.
After Larry Johnson became our District 3 Commissioner, he continued to work to enhance and strengthen community grassroots organizations. He implemented annual workshops for community Civic and homeowner associations throughout the district. During these workshops, the community grassroots organizations had the opportunity to meet face-to-face the DeKalb County department heads who deliver critical services to our citizens. The community leaders acquired a more thorough understanding of these services and how to better communicate with the departments that are tasked to deliver the services. Through direct contact and conversation with department representatives, the community organizations were strengthened through the power of knowledge. Commissioner Larry Johnson’s annual workshops continue the ongoing process of empowering grassroots organizations.
Glenwood Road is a major east-west thoroughfare through South DeKalb County. The portion of Glenwood that is in the City of Atlanta has sidewalks. Until several years ago sidewalks were not available to DeKalb County citizens who walk along this road. A child in our community became a traffic fatality while walking on Glenwood. Many neighbors in the surrounding communities asked what could be done to prevent this from happening again. Working closely with Commissioner Larry Johnson, our community leaders sought to have funding made available to construct sidewalks along Glenwood. It was a slow and arduous process to make sidewalks along Glenwood a priority for the county. Sidewalks have been installed along Glenwood for approximately 2 miles from Candler Road to Columbia Drive. Commissioner Larry Johnson assures us that this is only the beginning. He intends to have sidewalks installed the full length of Glenwood until it intersects with Covington Highway. Through Commissioner Larry Johnson’s efforts critical infrastructure has been brought to our district and our citizens walk with greater safety on wide sidewalks along this roadway.
Jobs! Over the many years that I have known Commissioner Larry Johnson, an issue that he continuously stresses is the need to bring new businesses to DeKalb County but especially to District 3. These new businesses will expand the job market for our citizens and enhance the economic well-being for us all. I attended several meetings during which Commissioner Larry Johnson solicited input from the community for ideas to replace the abandoned Columbia Mall that stood at the intersection of Memorial Drive and Columbia Drive. Through Commissioner Johnson’s efforts, a Walmart was built upon this site. Hundreds of DeKalb County citizens received jobs. During its first year of operation, this Walmart store became a sales leader for the Corporation. This clearly demonstrated that the need for a retail outlet for the surrounding communities was being satisfied by this store. Commissioner Johnson’s efforts were successful in fulfilling this need in our communities.
When a new director of the Code Enforcement Office was hired, Commissioner Larry Johnson organized a meeting between this officer and many grassroots community leaders throughout District 3. We had the opportunity to explain to the new director the problems that we had experienced with his office. Then, we gave the new director a guided tour of our communities, identifying to him locations with egregious problems. I showed him a derelict structure that had been a blight in my community for several years. I explained that many other neighbors and I had all filed code complaints, but no actions had been taken. About one month after this meeting, I was invited to observe the demolition of this derelict structure. Commissioner Larry Johnson makes government work for common citizens.
Commissioner Larry Johnson over the years has exercised great leadership in securing funds for numerous important services for all DeKalb County citizens. For example, he was instrumental in securing funds for the South DeKalb Senior Citizen’s Center. In addition, he led the 2020 Census Taskforce to assure that DeKalb County did not have an undercount. This will bring hundreds of millions of federal dollars to DeKalb over the coming decade.
These are a few of the reasons why I believe that Commissioner Larry Johnson is the clear choice for our community and should be re-elected as our District 3 Commissioner. Hopefully, our citizens can see this choice and re-elect Larry Johnson as our DeKalb County District 3 Commissioner.
– Wayne Powell
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