We’ve heard a great deal recently about our school system, and much of it hasn’t been positive. The news that Albany has made a positive accomplishment on the education front is both timely and welcome. A very special student at Albany’s Westover High School has been recognized as a STAR Student, not just on a local level, but he’s also the STAR Student for entire state of Georgia!
Michael Lomax is a motivated student. He’s always hard at work at his job, or studying so he can make the best grades. Michael gives 100% at everything he does. This young man is a great role model for anyone. He does not come from privilege, but is a working-class person, who was raised by a single mom, and has been working a couple of years himself to help cover expenses.
“Being poor is not an excuse. There’s a lot of help out there if you have grades. If you are willing to learn, if you’re willing to study, being poor is not an excuse to not do well in school,” he said.
Lomax credits one of his eighth-grade teachers, Carole Wiles, as being one of his inspirations for working so hard in school.
As Georgia’s STAR student, Lomax received a $5,000 scholarship. He not only has a full ride to Yale, which would cost $53,000 a year, but he is also one of a thousand students in the country to receive the Gates Millennium Scholarship, which will pay for most of his expenses for graduate school.
Remember the name Michael Lomax. He is making us proud now, and no doubt, will continue to do so from now on.
New candidates provide new hope
How often have you heard someone complain about the politicians who represent them? It seems to be happening more lately than usual. But when it comes time to run for office, the loudest complainers are rarely heard from. It seems they don’t often get actively involved in campaigns, and they certainly don’t often run for office themselves. This year, that may be changing, at least here in Dougherty County.
Four county commission seats and three spots on the school board are up for election, and all but one incumbent has opposition. Nine non-incumbents qualified to run for those seats, and almost all of them have no prior political experience. But they believe they can serve the voters well, so they’re willing to step up and give politics a try.
We’re not endorsing any candidate in any race, but we’re glad so many newcomers are entering those races. When voters have a choice, the public’s interest is better served. Contested races force candidates to be explicit about what they believe in and what they’ll do for the voters. Honest, respectful debate is good for democracy.
Running for office isn’t easy, and we respect anyone who’s willing to take on the challenge. We’re glad Dougherty County voters will have more options than usual this year. Now it’s up to the voters to learn about those candidates and make wise and well-informed decisions.
Written by Jim Wilcox, general manager of WALB.