Valdosta Civic Roundtable

March 4, 2010


Present: Jane Osborn, Becky Barnes, Donald Davis, Christy Englehart, Julie Halter, Katie Hardin, Shannon Jenkins, Dennis Marks, Cheryl Oliver, Gretchen Quarterman, Thea Spriggs, Jerome Tucker, Kristin Waites, Terri Whitlock.

RSVP’d, unable to attend: Secretary Leslie Jacobs, who was sorely missed, especially by the undersigned note taker.

Dennis Marks: Rotary Club of Valdosta had a very successful Law Enforcement Appreciation Dinner on Feb 18, raising over $12,000 this year, bringing a total of about $53,000 to the Valdosta Rotary Foundation fund available to help families of law enforcement personnel who suffer fire, flood, or loss of life in the line of duty. Working with Babies Can’t Wait and Head Start, the three Valdosta area Rotary Clubs have begun distributing a book a month to some Lowndes County children under age five.

Gretchen Quarterman: the Lowndes County Democratic Party is focusing its attention on four planks – health care, education, housing, and jobs & the economy. It is also working on voter registration and get out the vote activities for this year’s elections.

Christy Englehart: She is the Outreach Family Advocate at The Haven; they are currently at 103% of their capacity.

Julie Halter: VSU Continuing Education is presenting Spring Break Camp at VSU April 5-9 for kids ages 5 and up. Julie also distributed course schedules for the spring term of Learning in Retirement for seniors age 50 and up. For more information, call 245-6484 or go online to

Becky Barnes: Red Cross Donor Services urges groups to adopt a day at the Red Cross Donor Center. She also introduced Kristin Waites with ARC Blood Services.

Shannon Jenkins: Girl Scouts are wrapping up their annual cookie sale. Girl Scouts have pledged one million hours of community service! They are looking forward to a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) program for girls at VSU.

Thea Spriggs, the new Resource Efficiency Manager at Moody AFB, urged members to get in touch with her at to learn ways to save their organizations money through energy efficiency.

Jerome Tucker: everyone is encouraged to be counted in the 2010 Census coming up. Cuts in the state budget would affect an entire generation with the impact on education, 4-H, county extension, etc. Southwest Georgia Housing Task Force had a groundbreaking in Donaldsonville for a project funded by stimulus money. Community Partners in Education is continuing to work in five elementary schools providing mentoring. Committed volunteers are needed & appreciated. Attendees congratulated Jerome on his appointment by the Obama administration to the USDA's Farm Service Agency State Committee in Georgia!

Katie Hardin: Hospice of South Georgia is conducting a Cancer and End-of-Life Care seminar on Wed Mar 24. Also Children’s Grief Camp is coming up Apr. 9-11. Hospice is also offering services for dealing with grief in the workplace. You can contact Katie Hardin or any of the staff at Hospice at 671-8342 for questions & information.

Cheryl Oliver: Turner Center for the Arts is presenting “Yesterday and Today” on Mar 4. Youth Art Month exhibit is now showing at the Turner Center. Children’s Culinary Class on Sat Mar 20. “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” on April 19 at Crossroads Baptist Church. “Spring into Art” opens April 12; submissions are due by March 12.

Donald Davis: The Azalea Festival is Sat Mar 13 and Sun Mar 14. This is the 10th Annual Azalea Festival and promises to be better than ever!

Terri Whitlock: Red Cross will be conducting “Valdosta Superstar” at 7 pm, Fri Mar 13, at Mathis Auditorium; Shoe Carnival Grand Opening on Mar 29; VSU “Jammin’ for a Cause” for Haiti and Chile on Apr 18. To make a donation to Chile text CHILE to 9099.

Jane Osborn: Jane stressed the importance of the 2010 Census. Over a decade, undercounting costs the community $1,700 per person missed. In the 2000 Census, Lowndes County's response rate was 61 percent compared to the national response rate of 67 percent and the Georgia response rate of 65 percent. There are only 10 questions. One out of seven people will get the longer form. There will be a car parade and soccer tournament on March 27 to encourage participation. They are seeking census worker in this area. Call 912-590-3180 or 866-861-2010 or go online to Peach State Summer Theatre will present three plays at VSU this summer. The next Valdosta Symphony Orchestra concert is Sat Mar 27. Habitat for Humanity will have a Women Build May 5-8. Habitat is also looking for church groups to feed college build groups during spring break. On Mar 15 there will be a hearing for HUD grants at 5:30 in the City Hall Annex. Temple Israel is having its annual kosher corned beef sandwich sale on Sun Mar 14 and Mon Mar 15. LAMP will conduct its annual “Homeless 4 a Night” Fro Mar 12 at the Park Avenue United Methodist Church. Valdosta Junior Service League has its Teddy Bear Tea to benefit the Children’s Advocacy Center on Sat Mar 6. A useful newcomer’s Community Guide is available; contact March is Social Work Month. NASW will meet on Mar 26.  


That concludes the minutes from our March meeting. We meet the first Thursday of each month. Next meeting is Thursday, April 1st (no joke!). Representatives of all community groups and agencies are most welcome.


Dennis Marks,

Past President


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