Austin Scott coming to Valdosta

Courtesy of Scott will be the guest speaker at the upcoming Agency and Community Luncheon, hosted by United Way, at the Boys and Girls Club gymnasium Aug. 15. 

VALDOSTA — U.S. Rep. Austin Scott is joining several nonprofit organizations for a bite to eat. 

Sponsored by United Way, the congressman will be the guest speaker at the Agency and Community Lunch noon-1 p.m., Aug. 15, at the Boys and Girls Club gymnasium. 

Michael Smith, United Way’s newest director, said this is his first event to bring together the umbrella of agencies, community leaders and politicians.

“The whole point is about community and to have businesses, nonprofits and government together to discuss how to grow South Georgia,” Smith said. “(Scott is) going to speak for 15 minutes, take some questions and everybody will go their way.”

Scott is the Republican U.S. congressman representing Georgia's Eighth District, which includes Tifton, Thomasville, most of Valdosta and parts of Macon, Perry and McRae. He resides in Tifton.

With the congressional session on recess, Scott just happened to be visiting Valdosta.

His people reached out to Smith, who planned the luncheon as well as a tour of United Way’s new, permanent facility, where its agencies will get to meet Scott face to face.

“He is coming by the office and having time with our agencies who will talk about their missions, the support needed and funding issues,” Smith said. “We want him to hear their stories about what they do for the community. This is all about helping the agencies have better relationships with government officials.”

Greater Valdosta United Way’s agencies include the Lowndes Education Improvement Fund, Jacob’s Ladder, Valdosta-Lowndes County Habitat for Humanity, the Haven, the YMCA, Camp Rock Georgia, American Red Cross of South Georgia, Airman and Family Readiness Center, Boy Scouts of America South Georgia Council, Second Harvest of South Georgia, Reach Out and Read, Boys and Girls Clubs of Valdosta, Children’s Advocacy Center of Lowndes County, Lowndes Advocacy Resource Center, the Salvation Army, Youth Impact Center, Alzheimer’s Caregivers Time Out, Easter Seals of Southern Georgia and Lowndes Associated Ministries to People.

All of the agencies are nonprofit organizations that rely heavily on community support and funding, Smith said.

Luncheon prices are $40 for an individual seat with lunch included, while a reserved table will go for $250, which affords lunch for eight guests. Covington’s will offer a buffet lunch and either tea or water to drink.

Seating is limited, Smith said, so reserved tickets are a must. Reservations can be made by calling (229) 242-2208 or emailing

Katelyn Umholtz is a reporter with the Valdosta Daily Times. She can be contacted at (229)244-3400 ext. 1256.

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