Valdosta Daily Times

Local News

April 13, 2014

Rep. Sharper holds town hall meeting

VALDOSTA — Saturday morning, State Rep. Dexter Sharper held a town hall meeting at Crossing Jordan Baptist Church to meet with concerned citizens of Valdosta, share his feelings toward bills on the governor’s desk and to discuss the upcoming Let Us Make Man event. As Sharper indicated, he wanted to give Valdosta residents a comfortable, informal environment to discuss their feelings.

After enjoying breakfast, Sharper addressed guests about the steps being taken to “make what we have even better.” He began with a discussion about the 2014 Let Us Make Man, which is a gathering to regain black manhood. This year’s event will be taking place at Valdosta State University on April 26 with keynote speaker Penny Brown. This year’s seminars will include Law and Black Society, Social Media and Beyond, The Art of Community Organizing for Social Change, Mentoring, Conflict Resolution, Making the Modern Family Work, Recognizing the Genius in Black Youth, What’s Next: College, Career or Trade, Understanding Mental Health Issues and Solutions in the Black Community and Gangs, Cliques and Crews.

Each person who attends the gathering will pick two seminars to attend, so groups that may attend, such as churches, are recommended to split up their members so they can get a well-rounded experience. It is the hope of this gathering to empower young people, their parents, mentors, and advocates as well as inspire all participants to organize in the interest of black manhood.

Let Us Make Man is free and open to anyone interested in the betterment of the  black community regardless of ethnicity, physical ability, gender or social standing. Registration can be done online at or call 1-877-538-1626.

Also discussed at the meeting were a variety of bills at the capitol. Sharper elaborated upon each of them so attendees were given a better idea of what is happening in our state. Addressing such hot-button issues as drug testing for food stamps, medical marijuana legalization and gun laws, Sharper listened to the concerns of citizens while sharing his opinions on these issues.

In his closing remarks to attendees, he urged everyone to remember the importance of voting and there’s no excuse for not voting at every opportunity. “We have to step up,” says Sharper. “Excuses are only good for the person that’s giving them.”

Always wanting to hear the opinions of our local residents, Sharper also urges everyone to let him know their thoughts on the issues at hand via e-mail, phone call, attendance at this local town hall meetings, or attendance at other local government meetings. “I would like to see more people involved with the process on a state level.”

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