As a first time political candidate for DeKalb County Board of Education District 6 open position, I have learned a lot. I had an awesome experience which has opened the door to many opportunties for collaborative efforts with other groups and communities for the same cause.
I have to ask, did you really think that I was going to walk away licking my wounds due to lack of voter turn out? Did you truly believe I would not have a plan B in place should plan A did not come to fruition? (Those of you who know me know better...smile) An advocate, is an advocate, is an advocate it's in my blood. Just because one does not sit on a Board does not mean their voice can not be heard. In fact, this avenue might allow a stronger collaborative effort with various entities to make change, and make a difference without the worry of SACS sanctions.
A bit of history about this venture...
I began investigating the right type of council representation for our area in November of last year. I spent time juggling a Parent Council concept vs. a Community Council concept; and chose the latter as it was more appealing for the needs of our community. (I did not envision it to be a parent council, as those are more aligned with the PTA/PTSA and are focused more on advocacy vs. whole community.) I met with our DeKalb County Board of Education Area Superintendent, Dr. Kenneth Bradshaw, and Ms. Kendrick to discuss the need for Stephenson to establish a council. Although we did not need approval from DCSS, I wanted to keep Dr. Bradshaw in the loop on our intent.
Next came, various discussions with members of the community, idea sharing, and meetings to discuss the need of this form of representation for our area. Our vision was to develop a council that was interested in the well being of the community as a whole. There was a need to differentiate ourselves from a PTA/PTSA and their charter.
One key factor of this council was the necessity of unifying as a community, partnering with like mind communities, and advocating for our children and schools. We need to strengthen our relationships as well as reach out to our counterparts to see what can be done for a cohesive partnerships for the future of our schools and communities. An opportunity presented itself, and I decided to throw in my hat as a candidate for the open position for DeKalb County School Board of education District 6.
While campaigning, I also did my due diligence in working on completing my initial task and set the foundation for us to move forward. Thanks to a GREAT team of individuals, I am PROUD to announce the formation and fully operational Stephenson Community Council, Inc. which is an Incorporated not for profit entity.
The following individuals are listed as registrants on the documentation:
Denise McGill- Founder CEO
Keith DeBowles- CFO
Dr. Cynthia Prather- Secretary
There are a two final steps necessary for completion. The adoption of the proposed by-laws, and the election of officers. We will then need to start the process of filing for our 501 (c) 3 exemption. We are membership based, and seek individuals interested in making a positive change within our community.
Our current media offerings include:
STONE MOUNTAIN PATCH: http://stonemountain.patch.com/users/stephenson-community-council-inc
As an organization of dynamic, innovative, creative, and dedicated people, our focus will be to continuously improve our ability to provide a variety of public services in a climate of increasing change. The SCC will actively engage in continuous learning, performance improvements, and teamwork. By applying technology, improving our work processes, and building partnerships with other communities, we will excel in providing for the needs of our community.
OUR CORE VALUES
1. We stand ready to welcome and work with all persons.
2. We will treat each person with compassion, dignity, and grace
3. We will assist each person we serve towards self-sufficiency, well being, and be an active participant in the community.
4. We will be good stewards of the resources entrusted to us
5. We will conduct ourselves with honesty, ethically, and with integrity.
It is my hope that we step up to the plate and begin formulating relationships with other organizations for the betterment of our community and our children.
We look forward to partnering with DeKalb School Watch II, Get The Cell Out, Various Neighborhood organizations, eduKalb ,as well as the four Parent councils linked to Dekalb County Schools.( DCPC, ELPC, SDPC,& TPC). We are ready for open discussion , conversation, and resolution to crisis that affect and face us all. This is the tool for the Stephenson Community to allow our voices be heard in numbers. Please be a part of change and join us as we begin this new adventure.
We look forward to this new and exciting venture and partnerships as we remain with One Focus-One Vision-One DeKalb....
Denise E. McGill- Founder
“Individually, we are one drop-Together we are an ocean”~Ryunosuke Satoto