In the last state allowing for the sole commissioner form of government, Bartow County is the most populous of the nine counties with a single executive at the top, and Sunday afternoon state and local officials took the stage at the building named for Bartow’s longest serving commissioner.
Words of praise were generously given from politicians, community members and county employees in a presentation preceeding the award of his 40-year service pen from Assistant County Manager Lane McMillan.
Speaking on behalf of commissioner’s office staff and all county employees, County Administrator Steve Bradley tearfully thanked Brown for his leadership and his service, while also taking the time to thank Brown’s family for their support and sacrifice.
“Clarence has shared his family with us and he has made us family,” Bradley said. “Clarence has never made a speech about the accomplishments of Bartow County without praising the employees — those people who come to work every day and do their job. And I can speak for the employees, because a lot of them have come up to me over the years and told me how much they thought of their commissioner.
“Last, but not least, I want to say, we are a family and we love you and you’ll never know how much you’ll be missed.”