BARTOW BIO — Commissioner Clarence Brown, more than just a name
by Shaka S. Lias
Mar 13, 2011 | 4206 views | 0 0 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Clarence Brown stands outside the recently opened Clarence Brown Conference Center. Brown has been Bartow County’s commissioner for 19 years.
SKIP BUTLER/The Daily Tribune News
Clarence Brown stands outside the recently opened Clarence Brown Conference Center. Brown has been Bartow County’s commissioner for 19 years. SKIP BUTLER/The Daily Tribune News
Friday morning, a little after 10, in walks Commissioner Clarence Brown, apologizing for being "late." It's only 10:02, but he considers himself late for the 10 o' clock appointment. After a short photo session, Brown sits down to an interview. Afterward, he walks around the building named in his honor, "Clarence Brown Conference Center," proudly giving a tour. In the Etowah Ballroom Mya Williams prepares for her wedding reception the following day. Upon an introduction, "Oh you're the one this building is named after," she says. A very humble Brown replies, "It's just a name on a building."

Occupation: Bartow County Commissioner, 19 years

City of residence: Cartersville, born and raised in Kingston

Age: 68

Family: Married to Carol for 49 years, three kids and eight grandchildren

Education: 1961 graduate of Cass High School

Q: What did your wife say when the center was going to be named in your honor?

A: There was another building they wanted to name [in my honor]. A judge was going to order it -- "I said no, I don't want that to happen. I don't want my name on a building." My wife knew that and when this building came up and I told her they were trying to do that again and that I didn't want that she said, "You know, it's time for you to quit thinking about yourself and start thinking about your kids and your grandkids," and I thought about that a little bit and just left it alone. The committee carried it out and when they told me about it I was thinking, have you really checked with the rest of the people in the county to see how they felt? They said they had called a lot of people and talked with them and everybody said they thought it was a good idea, so it went from there.

Q: If you weren't commissioner what would you be doing?

A: Well, I was in the public works department, so I'm going on 39 years with the county. Before I worked for the county I was working for Lockheed. Commissioner Olin Tatum asked me to work for him. I said I would work as a shop foreman, then the road superintendent died and I took his place. Probably would've still been at Lockheed as a supervisor.

Q: What do you do in your downtime?

A: I like to read and play golf, that's pretty much what I do. I like mysteries by Stuart Woods and James Patterson books. Every few years I like to go deep sea fishing, but not that often because it's too expensive.

Q: What is your favorite TV show?

A: I like it when the bad guy gets caught. Right now my favorite show would be Blue Bloods, it's a new show.

Q: What is your favorite Bible scripture?

A: No doubt, John 3:16

Q: What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?

A: They might be surprised to know that before all my tough decisions, I pray before I make them.

Q: How would you describe yourself as commissioner, father, husband, grandfather and friend?

A: "Humbling, blessed, blessed, blessed and a friend under any circumstance, no matter what.

Q: What is your all-time favorite meal?

A: Steak with a baked potato and a salad with ranch dressing.

Q: If you could give Bartow County one thing, what would it be?

A: The company that will give everyone out of work a job.

Q: What would you most like to be remembered for?

A: Serving Bartow County the best I could, doing the best job that I could do in all things, making sure that the road and bridges were fixed and that the employees really worked hard for the public.