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I am pleased to see the Board of Supervisors taking such intentional measures to recognize and work with the African American community. It is refreshing to see our Board and the local African American community working together so well.
The relationship between the African American community and Pittsylvania County government has not always been great. However, things are moving forward and have improved dramatically in recent years due to this board’s dedication to recognizing the contributions of prominent African Americans and ensuring that the Black community in Pittsylvania County is updated on what is happening.
During its January meeting the Board of Supervisors unanimously voted to pass a resolution in favor of renaming the Chatham South Bridge after the late Clyde L. Banks Sr., a well-respected County native and Civil Rights activist. As I said during that meeting, this was one of the greatest signs of respect and love from the Board of Supervisors towards the Black community that I have ever seen. Throughout the month of February, which is Black History Month, Pittsylvania County also honored several prominent local African Americans like Mr. Banks and Irvin Burton.
I have also been working for some time on the development of a monument featuring several prominent African Americans, including Booker T. Washington, Rosa parks, Mary Mcleod Bethune, Dr. Carter G. Woodson, and George Washington Carver that would be placed in downtown Chatham. Throughout the process I have felt the wholehearted support of this Board of Supervisors and county government.
As I wrote a few weeks ago, Pittsylvania County has been striving to communicate better with our residents, and this includes targeted efforts to reach the Black community. This has taken the form of a weekly show on WKBY, which reaches much of our county’s African American community and presentations from county employees during NAACP meetings.
Having attended a segregated school in Mt. Airy and participated in local politics at various levels for decades, I am pleased to see the Board of Supervisors taking such intentional measures to recognize and work with the African American community. Amid such divisive national politics, it is refreshing to see our Board and the local African American community working together so well.
-Dr. Charles H. Miller, Jr., Banister District Supervisor