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DeKalb County commission re-elects officers; Commissioner will lecture at GSU

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DeKalb County commission re-elects officers; Commissioner will lecture at GSU

DeKalb County Government Manuel J. Maloof Center in downtown Decatur. Photo by Zoe Seiler.

DeKalb County, GA — The DeKalb County Commission has re-elected its officer and presiding officer.

The commission re-elected Commissioner Robert Patrick as presiding officer and Commissioner Mereda Davis Johnson as deputy presiding officer for 2023.

DeKalb County Commissioner and Presiding Officer Robert Patrick joined U.S. Sen. Jon Ossoff during a press conference on Tuesday, Aug. 16, at the DeKalb County Police Department Headquarters. Photo by Zoe Seiler.

DeKalb Commissioner Mereda Davis Johnson speaks during DeKalb County’s first Juneteenth celebration held at the Decatur Square on Friday, June 18, 2021. Commissioner Davis Johnson sponsored the ordinance to recognize Juneteenth as an official county holiday. Photo by Dean Hesse.

Patrick also made the following committee assignments:

County Operations (OPS) Committee

— Mereda Davis Johnson, chair

— Larry Johnson, member

— Michelle Long Spears, member

Public Works & Infrastructure (PWI) Committee

— Lorraine Cochran-Johnson, chair

— Ted Terry, member

— Robert Patrick, member

Employee Relations & Public Safety (ERPS) Committee

— Ted Terry, chair

— Mereda Davis Johnson, member (updated)

— Steve Bradshaw, member

Finance, Audit, & Budget (FAB) Committee

— Steve Bradshaw, chair

— Lorraine Cochran-Johnson, member

— Robert Patrick, member (updated)

Planning and Economic Development & Community Service (PECS) Committee

— Larry Johnson, chair

— Robert Patrick, member (updated)

— Michelle Long Spears, member

In other county commission news, Commissioner Lorraine Cochran-Johnson will be the featured lecturer at Georgia State University today, Jan. 18.

Here’s the full announcement:

DeKalb County Super District 7 Commissioner Lorraine Cochran-Johnson speaks during the annual DeKalb County Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day celebration at The Gallery at South DeKalb in greater Decatur on Monday, Jan. 17, 2022. Photo by Dean Hesse.

DeKalb County Commissioner Lorraine Cochran-Johnson will address students at Georgia State University (GSU) to discuss policymaking and the ongoing need to evaluate community in the development of public policy.

The lecture will take place today, January 18, at 1:00 p.m. at GSU’s Alpharetta campus and will engage students in actively discussing policy related issues, including public safety, housing, and voting.

“It is important to expose students to knowledge through the engagement of individuals who have practical knowledge,” said Arch Kielly, Professor of Political Science at GSU. “My class is comprised of students of diverse gender, race, nationality, and political opinions. We have critical discussions on complex issues to prepare them professionally and socially on diverse global and local thought.”

The discussion will include how, why, and where policy is created at the federal, state, and local levels of government. In addition, it will also encompass the politics of policy, home rule, and the authority of a local jurisdiction to exercise powers of governance delegated to it by its state government.

“I am very excited to join the GSU students to talk about democracy and public policy,” said Commissioner Cochran-Johnson. “As a former professor at the Art Institute of Atlanta, I miss the classroom environment. It is important to engage in community conversations and to help students understand democracy only works when people participate. True democracy and public policy should be a reflection of the community and their needs. The slippery slope of policy is it reflects what government chooses to do or not do about a particular issue or problem. So, at the end of the day, policy can fall short of achieving its goals, depending upon a variety of factors.”

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