By Brenda Daniel
The city of Grambling brings in a new year with a new regime in its civil governance. On New Year’s Day at Grambling University’s Black and Gold Room, more space and chairs were added to the already fully packed venue, to accommodate hundreds of supportive residents, as they convened to witness the inauguration of Mayor-elect Alvin Bradley and the new city council members: John Brown Jr., Kathy-Giles, Jerry Lewis, DeVaria Hudson Ponton and Delores Wilkinson-Smith.
Grambling State Showing solidarity and support as the university’s president, Richard J. Gallot Jr., and the reigning Miss Grambling Kelli Copes were present to welcome and make special acknowledgements.
A communal display of prayer and unity was led by eight local clergy, as each of them focused on eight specific areas of need for the city.
State Official John F. Belton, Lincoln Parish Attorney General, offered a compelling charge for commitment to public service, as he touched on the Declaration of Independence.
Belton pointed out that from the beginning of this nation God, service and leadership worked hand in hand; and in leading today, “… decisions must not be made by emotion, but rather with spirituality and ethics.”
The oaths of office for the mayor and council were facilitated by the Honorable Third Judicial Court Chief Judge Bruce Hampton.
Mayor Bradley gave the people of Grambling a message of hope with a bright future. He addressed the people, thanking them for their support in getting him into office, with a special acknowledgement of Bruce Payne, his campaign manager, and Earl Albritton, who worked alongside him from the beginning.
Bradley assured the people of Grambling that although there is a lot of work ahead of them, he and his council are prepared to work together to ensure a great future ahead for the city and its residents. At the top of his task to tackle is strengthening the city’s infrastructure. He spoke of an initial assessment and master plan that would be initiated in increments of 30 to 60 to 90 days, of which he says has already been introduced to the council.
Bradley assured the residents that their voices and concerns for their city had been heard, and as a community they too were a vital part of helping to move the city forward. Implementation of community task force committees are to be established, whereby individuals can volunteer their services. Improved and more solvent businesses, rebuilding the relationship between the city and the university, appointment of a fire chief, directors for operations, and parks and recreation, were also priorities that would get immediate attention.
In closing, Bradley reiterated the significance of the term “Only One G” by stating, “…. Only One G is not just about the university, it’s about the entire city of Grambling because we are one and working together, we will make our city a great place to live, work and play… Now it’s time to push up our sleeves and go to work.”