Invited not to the well of the House, but instead to stand in the place of Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, Brown was honored in Wednesday’s morning session of the Georgia Legislature on day 14 of the General Assembly for presentation of an invite resolution initiated by State Rep. Paul Battles, R-Cartersville, and signed by State Rep. Christian Coomer, R-Cartersville, and State Rep. Rick Jasperse, R-Jasper.
“We had some of his family and many of those who had worked with him come to the Capitol Wednesday and had him recognized from the speaker’s forum, which is an honor in itself,” Battles said. “There’s very few invite resolutions that are honored. It has to be significant. To give an idea what types of people receive those resolutions, Thursday we had the retiring president of the University of Georgia. So it is only those people who have made significant contributions to the community.”
House Resolution 182 recognizes Brown upon his retirement for actions taken while in office to improve public safety, recreation and government services in addition to commending the commissioner for 50 years of marriage and 38 years of membership to Friendship Baptist Church where he has served as Sunday school teacher and deacon.
“Commissioner Brown has spent over 39 years in county government and over 21 years as the Bartow County Commissioner; and WHEREAS, he has dedicated his career to the improvement of his community and will be sorely missed as a leader, innovator and exemplary Georgian,” reads HR 182. “During his 21 years in office, Commissioner Brown expanded recreation programs and facilities, built eight new Fire/EMS services, secured additional property and facilities for courthouse administration offices, renovated the county’s historic 1902 courthouse, expanded facilities vital to the county’s well-being such as the local animal shelter and developed the county’s Geographic Information System.
“And WHEREAS, he has also contributed his distinguished leadership skills to the Association of County Commissioners of Georgia, which he presided over as president from 2003 to 2004.”
The resolution continues with praise for Brown’s efforts in securing grant funding for construction of nonprofit facilities, including the Boys & Girls Clubs of Bartow County, Hickory Log Vocational School, the Battered Women’s Shelter and Habitat for Humanity.
“Back when Clarence said he was going to retire,” Battles recalled. “I began to think about all the years he served us and all the accomplishments that have been made under his leadership and just by virtue of the fact that he is one of the longest tenured county commissioners in the state’s history – it didn’t take long for me to realize he needed to have some kind of special recognition.”
During Wednesday’s presentation, Brown was joined behind the Speaker’s podium by family, former staff members and County Commissioner Steve Taylor. In a voice of humility typical of the former commissioner, Brown kept his remarks brief and spent much of his time behind the mic thanking others.
“It’s just an honor to me to stand up here,” Brown said with wife Carol by his side. “I thought I would be in the well, but it is an honor to be standing here where the Speaker stands and that is a privilege in itself.
“I just can’t say thanks enough to you for this proclamation that you’ve done and thank you again to Representative Paul Battles.”
To view the full text of HR 182, visit www.legis.ga.gov, choose “HR” from the drop-down menu on the top left of the page, enter “182” in the search field and click the search button.