I am today announcing my decision to discontinue my campaign for re-election to the office of Mayor of Swainsboro. I was first elected mayor sixteen years ago, and I am extremely proud of all we have achieved since that time. Swainsboro is a special community with good, decent folks of different races, cultures, religions, and backgrounds. Sustaining that decency and goodness is the challenge that lies ahead. As I look to the future, I see a city that can continue to grow and prosper if its people choose to embrace compromise, fairness, trust, and cooperation. A city that cannot unite will constantly struggle and eventually decline. In the end, what is required is a real commitment on the part of everyone. My hope is that Swainsboro will make that commitment and do what needs to be done for the good of the entire community. I can certainly understand the feeling some may have that new leadership might better address the changing social and political environment, and that has played a role in my decision to step aside. Sixteen years is a long time to support any elected official, and I sincerely appreciate the loyalty and friendship over the years. I will serve the remainder of this last term and end my public service on December 31st. It has been a true honor to serve as Mayor of this great town, and I am glad to have done my part.