New Members, Valdosta City Council, 7 Jan 2010

The Valdosta City Council inducted three members: Deidra White (first time), Alvin Payton Jr. (re-elected), and Robert Yost (re-elected). The Council then elected John Eunice Mayor Pro-Tem. Here’s a playlist for the whole thing:

City Manager Larry Hanson read the election results.

Deidra White was elected for the first time, to District 2. Here she organizes the news photographers, gets sworn in, and gets a standing ovation. The Valdosta Daily Times doesn’t appear to have posted a story about this meeting afterwards, but it did post a story beforehand, spelling her first name wrong, and concluding:

White is very involved in the community as a volunteer, a parent and a business owner, with three restaurant venues in Downtown Valdosta. White also lives downtown, making her an expert in many ways on the plight of business owners in the city who pay higher taxes for services that some feel aren’t always rendered equally. White also knows the challenges of the economy and how to thrive even in a downturn. The city has had three previous female councilwomen, JoAnn Hartman, Bette Bechtel and Ruth Council, and it’s time again for a woman to help bring some balance to the boys club.

More important than her gender though is her level-headed approach to business, finance and community issues. The balance that has been at times missing on the council, which is nearly always unanimous in its voting, is what The Times hopes White will inject into the mix. It will be good to have a fresh perspective at City Hall.

Alvin Payton Jr. was re-elected for District 4 and sworn in.

Robert Yost was re-elected for District 6 and sworn in.

Then the council elected John Eunice Mayor Pro-Tem and he was sworn in and gave a brief speech.