Americus Times-Recorder, Americus, Georgia


January 19, 2013

The Soap Box: ATR fully supports public education in Sumter County


The Soap Box

Ms. (Alice) Green,

I am the new Publisher at the Americus Times-Recorder. Being new to the community, I was concerned about the opinion you voiced at the Sumter County Board of Education meeting last Thursday night. I would like an opportunity to visit with you and any or all board members to address any issues you may have with the small business I run. Please check your schedule and see if there is a convenient time when we can meet. You can reach me at (229) 924-2751. I thank you in advance for your time and consideration.

Best regards,

Tom Overton

I sent the email above on Monday morning to Ms. Alice green and copied all SCBOE members. Unfortunately, I got no response from my email or the subsequent phone call I placed Thursday morning, but I felt compelled to reach out and ask for some clarity about her strong opinion of the ATR. My wife and I attended the Thursday night meeting of the SCBOE and heard her comment myself. The "Americus Times-Recorder is not a friend of public schools" Ms. Green declared.

That is absurd.

In this picture you see only a small portion of the past three months public school coverage, not including sports.

How soon we forget

In December of 2011 the ATR and publisher Dan Sutton were honored with a Beacon Award by the Georgia School Boards Association for exceptional education reporting. The GSBA Beacon Award is given annually to media organizations who have shown a willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty to report educational issues to their communities.

We were nominated for this award by The Sumter County Board of Education "because of the dedication shown to the journalism profession and to providing citizens with thorough and accurate information about the school system.”

Our Duty

The newspaper's job is to report on the governing bodies and the use of taxpayer money. We will continue to represent the public at open meetings and endeavor to ensure all decisions are made in compliance with Georgia's Open Meetings/ Sunshine Laws.

It is our right, responsibility and duty to do so.

Tom Overton

Publisher and Advertising Director

The Americus Times-Recorder


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