Kingston mayor to attend statewide conference
by Shaka S. Lias
Apr 26, 2011 | 3988 views | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Dexter Jones
Dexter Jones
Kingston Mayor Dexter Jones will rub shoulders with some of the top black mayors this weekend in College Park at the Georgia Conference of Black Mayors to be held at the Hilton Garden Hill Millennium Center. During the conference, the mayors will discuss issues that affect their communities and the strategies and solutions that will result in a template for economic empowerment, the website states.

"I'm deeply honored to have a chance to go to such a gathering of prestigious people," Jones said. "I hope to get a chance to listen to things [mayors] are doing in their city and see if I can apply those to Kingston."

Jones said he has met some of the mayors before, but it was very brief. He is looking forward to meeting other black mayors.

"A large concentration of black mayors are in south Georgia; To be able to network with them is real important and helpful for me to be able to learn," he said.

Washington Mayor Wille E. Burns has been helpful in teaching Jones about grants. Burns is also president of the conference.

In addition to discussions each mayor is required to fill out a survey from the Environmental Protection Agency for their city. Jones plans to focus on Kingston's septic system.

"It's one of the biggest problems I have," he said. Kingston is still on well water, and Jones said it's time for improvements.

This will be Jones' first time at the conference since taking office in January 2009. The conference is held yearly throughout Georgia. Jones' two-year term ends this year, and he said he has plans to run again.

Meanwhile he is looking forward to networking with fellow mayors and feels this opportunity will benefit the city as well.

"It will give me and Kingston access to not just this statewide organization, but a national network of possible contacts," he said. He hopes to learn more about state and federal grants. One of Jones' biggest goals is to build a safe place for the kids of Kingston to congregate.

The Georgia Conference of Black Mayors Incorporated was established in 1986. Jones is one of 50 black mayors throughout Georgia. He is a native of Cartersville and is married to Ernestine Young Jones. They have two sons, Dexter "Deuce" Jr. and Deacon.