Coweta administrator honored for service

Coweta County Administrator Theron Gay was recently awarded the 2013 Jerry R. Griffin Excellence in Public Service Award by the Association of County Commissioners of Georgia. Pictured, from left, are ACCG Executive Director Ross King, Theron Gay and Walton County Commission Chairman and ACCG 1st Vice President Kevin Little. Photo/Special.

Longtime Coweta County Administrator Theron Gay has been named as the recipient of the 2013 Jerry R. Griffin Excellence in Public Service Award by the Association of County Commissioners of Georgia (ACCG). The award is given to recognize individuals who have made significant contributions to the citizens of Georgia through public service in county government.

Gay received the award during the recent 2013 ACCG conference in Savannah.

“Receiving this award was a great honor,” said Gay. “I have been blessed to have been part of a great team through the years with outstanding leadership and support from our County Commission, the county department heads and the great employees who all work together to make Coweta County a wonderful place.”

Commenting on the award and noting his 20 years of service as the county government’s administrator, ACCG Executive Director Ross King said Gay has worked successfully with county officials throughout his longstanding public service career to help shape the Coweta County community.

“He is a quiet leader who has effectively brought together county commissioners and staff to prepare for growth and set a vision for the future. He was able to upgrade the county’s bond ratings through challenging economic times and sustain a healthy fund balance of $31 million. Gay was chosen for this award for his competent, steady, reasonable and measured approach to county government affairs. He was nominated by the Coweta County Board of Commissioners and county staff members,” King said.

Coweta County Commission Chairman Bob Blackburn also noted Gay’s significant contribution to Coweta County over the past two decades.

“Theron is such an integral part of the county’s leadership and to its current and past stability and financial strength,” Blackburn said. “Theron’s management skills have put Coweta on a strong financial footing. He is skillful in his day-to-day handling of Coweta’s business and he is a very dear friend.”

Citing a number of Gay’s accomplishments as administrator, King after the award presentation said those included completing two successful LOST (Local Option Sales Tax) negotiations, voter of approval of seven consecutive county Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) initiatives, carrying out a complete rehabilitation of more than 900 miles of the county road system, airport growth and expansion, an award-winning rehabilitation of the historic Coweta County Courthouse, the addition of a new Justice Center and Juvenile Justice Center, expansion of the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office, the addition of a work release center at the Coweta County Prison and the addition of part-time firefighters to the county’s fire departments to ensure there was personnel on duty at each station at all times. He also was an instrumental figure in the expansion and initial location of the University of West Georgia’s Coweta County campus, King said.

Gay’s community involvement surpasses the boundaries of his role as county administrator, said King. He serves on the Newnan Hospital Board, the Supervisory Committee of Coweta Cities and County Employee Federal Credit Union and the finance committee for Moreland United Methodist Church. He is a volunteer basketball and baseball coach and an award-winning Boy Scout leader as a recipient of the Achieved Wood Badge Leadership Award, King said.

The award is named in honor of previous ACCG Executive Director Jerry R. Griffin who served in this position for over 23 years and was a recognized leader who established a solid foundation of programs and services that still exist today, said King.

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