Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this column of those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The Augusta Press.
I would be remiss if I didn’t state how good it felt to have the Masters in full swing again. Just about everyday I was able to take it in, if only for a little while. The crowds were enormous and the Augusta National, as always, was the gracious host.
They held nothing back this year. I’m glad that with everything, seemingly at times, still up in the air, the great people at the Augusta National have shown us that – maybe it’s time to get back to normal – whatever that is.
I often hear people say, “I’m just ready for things to be like they use to.” Well, I can assure you that we will never be there again. We will be much better.
The Masters does show us how great a community we are as a whole — all sections of our Augusta area get along so well. That’s important, and definitely something we need to take note of it. We need to practice this level of unity throughout the rest of the year.
Congratulations to Scottie Scheffler—the young man who won The Green Jacket this year—a feat within itself. The only thing that was a bigger story than that was having Tiger competing after the serious injuries he sustained in February 2021. He may not have won the tournament, along with the other 70+ people, but Tiger definitely got a “W” for the week.
Now to jump on some things a little more local
As I was making my way around the course, I ran into Lynn Gladney. In case some of you are wondering who she is or still have not heard that name, she is running for the house seat that will be vacated by Sheila Nelson. I asked Ms. Gladney how was she feeling about running and what could people look forward to – if she is elected. (I’m going to try to paraphrase our conversation a bit.)
Ms. Gladney basically let me know that the Masters should make anyone who walks through those gates feel captivated. Whether they are a spectator or golfer – this place is just simply magnificent. The inspiration that we find while walking up and down that beautiful golf course is what she hopes can spread in this city. Seems as if the Augusta National never misses an opportunity to hit the mark, and as a city, we shouldn’t either.
Ms. Gladney is a member of the Airport Authority, and she talked about the thousands of people who would be flying in. How they would have to leave the airport area to find hotels, food and even entertainment. She let me know as a subcommittee chairman, she understood the value of opportunity zones and, with the support of her board Chairman Mr. James Germany and people like Mr. Davis Beaman, who is her assistant subcommittee chairman, the vision for Augusta is bright. She has worked on many projects over the last few years and she is excited about the potential Augusta holds.
Speaking of candidates
I must say, I was a bit surprised to see Dennis Williams drop out of the mayoral race. He is a sitting commissioner who has termed-out and initially announced he would run for mayor. Well, as the field got crowded, Dennis said enough of this; decided he has had enough of politics…or so I thought.
Commissioner Williams has expressed—and now announced (at least to me)—his intentions on running for a seat on the Richmond County BOE School Board. I asked him why the sudden shift. He said as he went to go sit down, too many people were holding him up and saying they need his type of leadership on the school board. Dennis said in no uncertain terms that it’s time for a shakeup, and he is just the man to do it.
In the conversation I had with him and people who seem to be pushing this effort, they are hoping that this will help the school board gain some accountability and try to move some things forward.
I was told people were hoping they could get Dennis to run and also possibly Commissioner Bobby Williams—with his education background. The thought would be that they could be a good team to really change the face of education in our community.
It’s no secret our school system has had its share of hiccups. However, overall I believe that everyone is doing the best they can. I don’t like to hear people make off-the-cuff comments about the Richmond County School System because I’m a product of this great school system and I turned out ok. Not to name the countless others who have matriculated the halls of these great schools to become generals, politicians, successful business owners, educators, doctors, pharmacists and community leaders, just to name a few of the chosen careers.
I asked Dennis what seat he’s running for, and he told me he would confirm that with me later. I would think the obvious option would be District 2 since Charlie Hannah is running for mayor. I was told that Charlie doesn’t have to step down – which I didn’t quite understand since there was so much talk about ….nevermind. However, the mumblings from behind the scenes are saying Dennis is considering a run for District 9, which would put him on a collision course to run against longtime board member Venus Cain. Good luck with that one. She’s tough.
As I was finishing this section, a longtime politico called me. I asked them how they felt about Dennis running. They stated, “And he could win.” They said, “Dennis should run, Ben should run and Bobby should run… that would really help the kids.”
Sheriff is not going anywhere
I have been asking people close to the sheriff whether Roundtree was going to stick around. I was told without a doubt he is definitely running another term. That will get some cheers from those closest to him, and you have to admit it seems that he is really gotten on his horse to chase down bad guys.
This climate is extremely tough for law enforcement. That within itself is the main factor that has deterred many from joining the ranks and causing even more to leave. When you speak to people who are former law enforcement, they say there isn’t enough money in the world to make them go back. You can’t blame them … all we can do is appreciate the ones that are strapping it up everyday. So, make sure the next time you see a first responder say thank you.
Let me leave this little light of motivation I heard this week.
Legacy is not something for people. It’s leaving something in people. I try to do that each week as I write. I try to leave people with something to think about and maybe look at from a different angle.
This past week, I attended the Masters and several different events. I was touched by the many different people who came up to me and said they read my column each week. Now, whether they agree with everything I say is a different story. One person in particular said, “You’re Michael Meyers from TAP. I read your stuff. It’s nice to meet you, even though I feel like I already know you.”
That made my heart smile and really made me feel good. He didn’t know it, but just him speaking and seemingly being excited to meet me was humbling. It makes me feel like at least I’m doing something that can make a difference.
My great mentor Mr. Henry Ingram quotes his father often by saying: “If I can just help somebody along the way, then my living was not in vain.” How appropriate.
The mayor was at one of the events I attended. I said, “Mr. Mayor, when are you getting out of here? I was told you are leaving.” He looked at me, frowned, and then stated, “Is this because…”
Here I go getting ahead of myself again.
If you missed the Legend’s Party at Top Golf you missed a treat. It was everything and more. Make sure to check out TopGolf and book your next event there.
That place is amazing.