November 10, 2013

Letter: A councilman and a gentleman

With the first Tuesday in November behind us, and the Dalton City Council’s future makeup established by the electorate, it is appropriate to look back and say thanks to the retiring Councilman of Ward 2, Mr. J. Richard “Dick” Lowrey.

Elected to council in 2005, Dick Lowrey has served two full terms during which time he also served as mayor pro tem. Future generations will look back on Mr. Lowrey’s tenure as occurring during one of the deepest and longest recessions in American history, and he will be remembered for doing something about it.

Always proactive, Mr. Lowrey didn’t sit back and wait for the economy to turn around. Instead, Mr. Lowrey, together with the leadership of Mayor David Pennington and his fellow council members, acted swiftly to provide city residents and businesses with immediate relief by lowering taxes.

In addition, and what is truly amazing, is how many wonderful things Mr. Lowrey accomplished in the face of such strong economic headwinds. Always humble and never boisterous, Mr. Lowrey would never brag about what he has achieved so I’ll brag a little bit for him.

Here is just a sampling of some of the many ways in which Dick Lowrey — truly a quiet giant — changed the landscape of our city:

• Upgraded almost every Dalton Parks and Recreation facility including six new sports turf fields and the signature community project, the Mack Gaston Community Center.

Installed four new playgrounds: one wet (the splash-pad), another wild (the skate park).

• Built Georgia’s first hiking and mountain bike park in an urban setting (Mount Rachel).

Transformed the old post office into the area headquarters for economic development bringing together the Great Dalton Chamber of Commerce and Carpet and Rug Institute.

• Reinvigorated relations between the city and Dalton State College by allowing college athletics on city fields and courts.

• Significantly improved traffic at the intersection of Glenwood Avenue and the bypass.

• Made dramatic safety improvements at the airport that will allow large corporate jets to return to the Carpet Capital of the World.

I could go on and on but there is not enough space in this newspaper to fully describe Mr. Lowrey’s good work. However, there is enough time left before the end of this, his final term, for us to pat him on the back for a job well done. I encourage you come to at least one of his remaining Council meetings (Nov. 18, Dec. 2 or his final meeting on Dec. 16) and say thanks to Dick Lowrey — a councilman and a gentleman.


Ty Ross

Dalton City Administrator

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