Roses and thorns: 6/25/17




A rose to Lynn Brown, who will take over as executive director of the Columbus Arts Council next month.  


Brown brings a wealth of experience to the job and, as a native of Columbus, is well familiar with the community. Her background in fundraising is an important quality as the CAC focuses on growing its endowment and offering new cultural and arts opportunities. 


Brown replaces Tina Sweeten, who served six years as director before leaving for a job with the American Red Cross in Flowood in late February.  


Under Sweeten's direction, the CAC offered a diverse variety of arts and cultural events to rival those offered in many much larger cities.  


We are eager to see Brown put her own ideas into practice as the CAC continues the success we have come to know and appreciate. Welcome aboard, Lynn. 




A rose to the Columbus Municipal School District Board of Trustees for finding a way to avoid asking for a millage increase for the 2017-18 school year.  


The Board announced last week it would not seek a millage increase after approving two measures to cover what appeared to be a budget shortfall. 


Specifically, the district plans to defer roughly $507,000 in debt by refinancing a 2009 construction bond. CMSD has also cut 32 paraprofessional positions, which will save the district about $1.1 million next year.  


These are not easy decisions, we realize, and chronic state underfunding continues to cast a shadow over our public schools. At some point, our schools will have no other option but to ask for a millage increase. But by demonstrating a willingness to make the tough budget decisions now, the CMSD board will have established its credibility when that day comes. 




A rose to Dak Prescott, who has shown that time, distance and the bright light of fame have not diminished his loyalties to Mississippi State.  


The NFL's Offensive Rookie of the Year, now with the Dallas Cowboys, insisted that the first of his youth football camps be held at Mississippi State, where he became the most decorated player in Bulldog football history.  


The reception was as much as might be expected -- 700 kids turned out for the camp, the first of many Prescott will hold this summer. There is no real way to calculate what Prescott meant to MSU during his college career. He raised the profile of the program far beyond what any other player has ever been able to do. It's clear, that the Bulldog community will continue to benefit from its connection with this rising star in the NFL. 




A rose to Mother Goose, aka Edwina Williams, who was named as a "Mississippi Main Street Hometown Hero" recently in Jackson during the Mississippi Main Street Association's 28th annual awards luncheon. Mother Goose has long been a hero to generations of Columbus children, so it's nice to know that her reputation has grown beyond our community. Our unofficial Goodwill Ambassador continues to be a "kid magnet" wherever she goes and a hero to the rest of us.



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