Roses and thorns 1/14/18




A rose to organizers of events designed to honor the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.


Monday is the federal Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and groups around the Golden Triangle offer a variety of options. A commemoration at the Trotter Center in Columbus begins with a free breakfast at 8 a.m. Followed by an address by David L. Beckley, president of Rust College and the longest-tenured college president in the state. In Starkville, Mississippi State University will host the 24th annual Unity Breakfast at 8 a.m. at The Mill, followed by a program featuring former Rep. Tyrone Ellis, recently retired after serving Mississippi's District 38 for 38 years in the Mississippi House of Representatives. West Point's annual Martin Luther King Jr. celebration will begin at 9 a.m. when an assembly of marchers departs from a parking lot at East Half Mile Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Street. The procession will end at Central School Center Stage on Westbrook Street for a program at 10 a.m. with Rev. Raphael Terry, pastor of Davidson Chapel CME Church in West Point and Bigbee Valley CME Church in Brooksville.




A rose to Columbus businessman Ron Harper for his purchase of Camp Henry Pratt from the Frank P. Phillips YMCA. The Y, citing limited use of the facility and maintenance costs, announced it was looking for a buyer for the 70-acre facility in December. On Tuesday, The Y announced the sale of the property to Harper. We are glad to see Camp Pratt will continue to be locally-owned and appreciative of Harper for allowing The Y to hold its three summer day camps on the property, as well as making it available to Camp Rising Sun, a week-long camp for children with cancer, which will hold its camp for the 31st year at the facility.



A rose to those who have announced their candidacies for the three chancery court judge positions which will be open this fall. The eight candidates -- Paula Drungole-Ellis, Roy A. Perkins, Gary Goodwin, Carrie Jourdan, Todd Bennett, Gene Barton, Lee Ann Turner and Rodney Favor -- have qualified for the seats in the 14th District that will be vacated by the retirement of judges Kenneth Burns, Dorothy Colom and Jim Davidson. The election will be held Nov. 6. We applaud all those who have stepped forward to serve in these important roles.



A rose to the Columbus Municipal School District Board of Trustees as it begins the process of seeking a new superintendent of schools. At its Monday meeting, the board announced that six search firms have been identified as candidates to help the trustees identify potential candidates. The board will meet Wednesday to review the proposals and could make a choice at that meeting. This is an important first step in an important process. While the fate of the district does not entirely rest on the shoulder of the next superintendent, it is clear that no more important decision can be made in determining the direction of the city's schools. We urge the board to carefully consider the credentials of these firms and choose the one that is best qualified to find a deep pool of qualified candidates.





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